Frye Island Golf Course

Minutes of Winter Meeting of March 6&7, 2004


A.  MEMBERS PRESENT: Tom Bishop, Tom Canty, Kathy Lyons, Chris Decker, Bruce Nisula, Maura Sullivan, and Greg Tedford.


B.    OTHERS PRESENT: Dave Decker on March 7, 2004.


C.    LOCATION:  Hawthorn Suites, Andover, MA


D.   CALL TO ORDER: Director Tedford called the Meeting to order at 9:00 AM Saturday, March 7, 2004. 


E.    PRIOR MINUTES: The draft of the prior meeting had been previously approved by unanimous vote over the internet.








1) Review of the Golf Year 2003 is as follows:


a)      Cash flow improved to positive during the fiscal year due to the following: I) Labor contributed by the Membership to paint and repair the Lounge/ProShop and to build the parking lot; II) Executive management of the operation provided by volunteers (Golf Committee Members) rather than hires; III) Improved Club house work scheduling; and IV) Greenskeeping efficiencies. 

b)      Lounge operation was improved significantly over previous years.

c)      Course was maintained as well or better than ever.

d)     Pro Shop was well managed, organized and profitable.

e)      Parking lot was completed, converting an eyesore into an architectural asset.

f)       Pond on hole 2 was dredged.

g)      Drainage was installed at sites on Holes 2, 3, 5, and 6, including a new culvert for Hole 6.

h)      Clubhouse was painted inside and out, and various repairs were done.

i)        Clubhouse basement was thoroughly cleaned and organized. 

j)        Repairs were made to garage door that is the access to basement storage.

k)      Two recent vintage Yamaha golf carts were purchased.

l)        A new sound system for the Lounge was purchased and installed.

m)    Social events and Club dinners were very popular and successful.

n)      An automatic safety shut off valve for the irrigation system was purchased but installation is not yet completed.

o)      Part- time staffing during high season to perform miscellaneous tasks (empty barrels on tees, clean carts, fill water barrels, maintain ball washers, rake traps, and the like) was highly cost effective.


2)       Various projects were suggested for addition to the Projects and Capital List as follows:  a)  Place additional lighting for the pathway from the parking lot to the Lounge at the barbecue shed, perhaps on a timer and photocell;  b)  Place some sort of edging at the front of the pond on Hole 2, such as rocks or timbers;  c)  Improve the drainage from the pond on Hole 2 through the woods to the pond on Hole 3;  d)  Consider a catch basin with drainage pipe to improve the drainage in front of the tee on Hole 2; e)  In light of the age and condition of the rug in the lounge, a new rug should be purchased this season; and  f)  Continuing with dredging of the ponds on holes 3 and 6.

3)       Various action items were identified as follows:  a)  Ask John how soon the functionality of the pressure controlled emergency shut off valve of the irrigation system can be assured;  b)  Greg will work to reconcile the existing situation with golf certificates, member book credits, and institute appropriate procedures for handling and accounting for them in the future; c)  Kathy is to make revisions to the Handbook based on this Meeting and circulate them to the Committee for final approval;  d)  Bruce will contact Wayne to inform him of the decision to hire an assistant to the greenskeeper while continuing the personnel structure otherwise the same as last year; e)  Greg will obtain family member ages;  f) Bruce will work with Joe Potts to advertise the email address of the Golf Committee on the Town website to begin to communicate via the internet;  f)  Greg will arrange for the placement of a reminder in the FINS that May 15 is the deadline for the Membership Fee discount; g)  Tom Canty will develop a new system for invoicing business customers for advertising on the granite tee markers; and h) Greg will draft a recommendation to FII regarding possible transfer to the Town.

4)       The near-final financials for 2003 were reviewed.  Overall, cash flow from the Golf Course was positive, which was attributable to a reduction on the expense side, not to an increase in revenue.  The extensive efforts by Members of the Golf Course in this regard made all the difference; that is, labor contributed by the Members to paint and repair the Lounge/ProShop and build the parking lot, and executive management of the operation provided by volunteers (Golf Committee Members) rather than hires.

5)       Personnel budget for 2004 is slightly increased over 2003.  With the staffing plan remaining basically unchanged from 2003, we expect to be able to operate within that budget.  At present all the part time personnel appear committed to working this year, which leaves recruitment of the full time assistant to the Greenskeeper to be accomplished.  In an ideal world, this employee would have training in greenskeeping or have experience with landscaping or machine operation.   Bruce will contact Wayne concerning the recruitment procedures to be used.

6)       The situation with the tee markers was reviewed. Tom Canty will oversee this area and work with Wayne to determine proper distribution of the invoices.  It was proposed and seconded that the charge for advertising on the markers be invoiced yearly at a charge of $150 per year plus the initial expense of making and installing the plaque.   Unanimously approved.

7)       Purchase of outdoor furniture for the Lounge was postponed from fall to this spring.  If the price is to be over $500, Greg must approve.

8)       A tournament subcommittee, which will act as the Coordinator of Tournaments Rules and Handicaps was formed consisting of Tom Bishop, Tom Canty, and Maura Sullivan.  Instruction manuals and checklists will be developed for both inside and outside tournament operations, including everything from posting to clean up.  

9)       The issues of youth and off-season rates were discussed and the decision was made to make no changes in policy.

10)   Kathy has prepared a memorandum to be distributed to the Members that reinforces the rules and informs them of our new e-mail address.  The memorandum will be sent to Wayne so that it can be included in the packet to be handed out to Members upon renewal of their memberships.

11)    The long term capital equipment strategy recognizes that reserving at least $15,000 per year for capital equipment costs would be reasonable.  Considering lease-buy option contracts in order to spread out the cost of the more expensive pieces of equipment was deemed an acceptable alternative to outright purchasing, if acceptable to the Town.  A plan to replace our aged tractor, which is used to mow the rough, was discussed at length, and Jay’s input was carefully and fully considered.  Mowing the rough is the biggest job that we have on a regular basis throughout the golf season.  The old tractor we are using has many hours on it, and if it breaks down, we have no satisfactory backup.  Its best years are behind it; it has approximately 4300 hours on it (comparable to 200 thousand plus car miles).  Also, using it for mowing the rough competes for its use in other tasks around the course—leaf blowing, fertilizing, excavating, loader work, backhoe work, edging the ponds, and the like.   Repetitive switching of the attachments for alternate uses wastes many valuable man-hours each week.  Perhaps most immediately troubling to golfers is that the old tractor damages the course.  It is heavy and tends to dig into the turf on turns and to leave areas of packed or damaged grass throughout the course and serious ruts in damp areas.  The new rough tractor that would be purchased has a better design for rough mowing.  It would be 2500 pounds lighter, and more "course" friendly due to better tires, a smoother transmission, lighter weight, and 4-wheel drive.  The plan is to dedicate the new tractor to mowing the rough, and to dedicate the old tractor to the multiple other tasks and projects that we have around the course, thereby enhancing the efficiency of existing personnel.  The old tractor would also serve as a back up machine for mowing the rough.  The cost would be about $22,000, which could be spread over three years.

12)   Pond dredging was discussed at length.  The job done this last fall on the pond on Hole 2 was excellent.   It was estimated that it would cost $5-6000 to perform similar dredging of the ponds on Holes 3 and 6 next year due to overgrowth that has exceeded what our personnel can handle. It was noted that in the future performing yearly maintenance would be required in order to prevent the vegetation overgrowth that precipitated this episode of expensive dredging.  Having a second tractor would facilitate our personnel performing the necessary pond maintenance and help us to avoid the expense of hiring a contractor with a huge excavator in the future.  

13)   It was proposed and seconded that the following new Handbook Policy be instituted: Credits in accounts that have no activity for a period exceeding twenty four months shall expire on the first day of the third calendar year after the calendar year the credit was recorded.   Unanimously approved. 

14)   Electrical, irrigation, and drainage drawings (as built) would be valuable records for the Committee to maintain.  How to implement obtaining these will be discussed with John.

15)   Question was raised about the role of fountains or "mechanical swimmers" in pond maintenance.   Bruce will investigate what the value of such devices might have for our Golf Course.

16)   It was proposed and seconded that the Golf Course Fee Schedule be unchanged for 2004, except for the following: Single Greens Fee $510.00; Family Greens Fee $760.00; and Trail Fee  $165.00; and Three Day Weekday Pass (not good Holidays; not transferable; no rain checks) $45.00.  Unanimously approved. 

17)   It was proposed and seconded that the following new Handbook Policy be instituted: Two concurring Members of the Golf Committee may authorize complimentary greens fees and cart use for consultants and golf professionals who have contributed (or who exhibit the prospect of contributing) value to the Golf Course exceeding the complimentary value authorized. Unanimously approved.

18)   Various organizational issues at the level of the Town and Frye Island Incorporated were discussed with Dave Decker including a) Possible transfer of FII assets to the Town; b) Possible organizational structures under the Town administration;  c) Possible requirement that the Golf Course pay for its own maintenance and improvements and in addition pay property taxes if owned by FII;  and d) Possible strategies for achieving a fair and open discussion of all the issues for the benefit of the voters and shareholders.  The consensus was supportive of transferring the Golf Course from FII to the Town.

19)   It was proposed and seconded that the following projects and capital expenditures be approved:  a)  Reroofing/repairing storage shed ( $2000); b) Replacing rug in Clubhouse ($3,000); c) Cart Path/Clubhouse Blue Stone ($1,500); d) Patio Chairs and Tables ($500); and e)  Purchase of Tractor for mowing rough (not to exceed $10,000 in current year, with the balance to be paid by lease/option to buy over three years).  Unanimously approved.

20)   It was agreed to look into adding an item such as “Operational & Equipment Expenditures” to the budget on a routine basis each year to account for projected yearly expenditures in these areas, provided, however, that the amount so budgeted shall not make the overall cash flow from the budget negative.

21)   Golf Committee Organizational Assignments for 2004 were agreed as follows:

Bruce                                         Course Coordinator

Greg                                           Clubhouse Coordinator

Kathy                                         Pro Shop Coordinator

Paul (& Bob M)                         Workday Coordinator

John                                           Sunday Scramble Coordinator

Maura, Tom B., & Tom C.        Coordinator of Rules, Handicaps & Tournaments


22)   Tentative Tournament Schedule for 2004 is as follows:

May 22                        Kick-off Classic

May 29                        Ryder Cup Member-Member

June 5                          Outside

June 19 or 26               Outside

July 3                           Steak and Hot Dog

July 17 or 24               East vs. West

August 7                     Member-Guest

August 14                   Rally for a Cure

September 4                President's Cup

September 11& 12      Outside

September 25              Shoot Out

October 9                    October's Best




    1.  Future Meeting Dates as follows:


Monthly meeting schedule May through October to be announced.



1)     Adjourned at 12 Noon on Sunday, March 7.


Minutes approved via the Internet on March 18, 2004.


Respectfully submitted,


Bruce C. Nisula

Secretary, Golf Club Committee