The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

By Grant McGee
The Staff of The News 

Golf course concerns dominate meeting


Last updated 3/19/2022 at 10:19am

Grant McGee

A number of area residents fill the seats at Thursday's Clovis City Commission meeting.  Many attended to voice their concerns over alleged poor conditions at the city's Colonial Park golf course.

Bear traps, golf carts, ropes and weeds peppered the talk about the condition of Clovis' Colonial Park golf course at Thursday's city commission meeting.

The regular session had more than the typical number of people in attendance. A number of citizens who came to the meeting were there to air complaints about the golf course.

Talk of the condition of the golf course was not on the agenda.  It came up during the open comments section of the meeting as one after another citizens stood before the commission and leveled allegations about the course. 

Area resident Tom Drake told commissioners he had experience on golf courses in New Mexico, Texas and Arizona.

"Colonial Park is significantly inferior," Drake said.

Dustin Anderson spoke of a golf team from Lovington schools coming to Colonial Park and talking of the poor conditions.

The roughness of the greens and grass in general was brought up along with lack of handicapped access, areas being roped off and the presence of "bear traps" on the course.

Prior to the golf course's detractors speaking Keaton Aucutt, the general manager of the course, had addressed the commission outlining plans for spring planting, working on the turf and killing weeds.

Aucutt is with Touchstone Golf, the company that has been managing Colonial Park since 2019.

Aucutt was asked to return to speak to commissioners after a number of critics had spoken.

"We understand the greens are not in good condition," Aucutt said.  "Ground temperatures need to go up for grass to grow."

After "bear traps" kept popping up in the talk over the course it was commissioner Helen Casaus who asked about them.

"What are these bear traps everyone's talking about," Casaus said.  "Surely we don't have bears out there."

It turns out the large traps are being used to keep geese off the greens as the birds tear up turf while they forage.

Wrapping up the discussion mayor pro tem Chris Bryant called for the commission to take a tour of the golf course to see what is going on at the city facility first hand.

In addition to the usual city business items on the agenda area residents Kathy Elliott and Susan Allman appeared before the commission representing area animal rescue groups proposing the Clovis animal shelter be open Saturdays so people could see the animals available for adoption during their day off.

Elliott pointed out that few people can get to the shelter weekdays between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Two city workers were given clocks as awards for their service to the city:  Police Lieutenant Dagoberto Rodriguez for being distinguished supervisor of the quarter and Alan Huckins from public works for being distinguished line employee of the quarter.

Mayor Mike Morris issued a proclamation declaring this past Friday as "Transit Drivers Appreciation Day."

Parks and Recreation Department director Russell Hooper introduced the city's new recreation administrator Tauree Curry to the commission.

Commissioners also voted to submit an application to the New Mexico Department of Transportation for funding for the reconstruction of Marvin Haas Boulevard.

The road runs from Prince to Sycamore streets and would get a mill and fill of 3 inches of asphalt.

That section of city street was chosen because it is a minor arterial roadway that is in poor condition.


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