Year in review: MNGL closes, future unclearNo. 9: The city of Red Wing is hoping to come to a resolution soon on legal matters at Mississippi National Golf Links and move forward with long-term decisions, but some questions remain.
By: Danielle Killey, The Republican Eagle
The city of Red Wing is hoping to come to a resolution soon on legal matters at Mississippi National Golf Links and move forward with long-term decisions, but some questions remain.
The city is involved in a lawsuit with former MNGL operator Wendell Pittenger and Associated Bank, which holds a bond due on the course, after the course closed this fall.
Pittenger announced in a September newsletter to members that he would close the course at the end of October. He auctioned off equipment earlier this month.
The city filed a complaint in October accusing Pittenger of a breach of contract and raised other concerns.
At the council’s meeting in December, members agreed to try mediation as a way to speed up a solution to the lawsuit, hoping to have it resolved as soon as possible so planning discussions can be more concrete.
Until the litigation, bond payment and other issues are worked out, the next steps for the course are unclear. But council members and city staff still want to get a long-term idea of what to do with the course and property.
They have encouraged the community to weigh in on ideas for the land and Mississippi National. The city held a public meeting Nov. 20 where council members heard a spectrum of viewpoints, from keeping the course open to removing all tax dollar involvement to expanding the scope of discussions to include recreational activities in the area. Council members have said it will take creativity and collaboration to come up with a solution.
The council has met with groups such as the nonprofit Red Wing Municipal Golf Corporation and the Red Wing Golf Club to discuss possible collaborations.
The city’s Golf Course Committee is aiming for a deadline of Feb. 1 to make a decision on a potential 2013 season and plans to come forward at the council’s first January meeting with a timeline and proposed process for moving ahead with decisions on the course, members said earlier this month.
The city is looking for a temporary solution to open the course for a 2013 season and for uses such as student golf programs. Any setup for 2013 likely would be a temporary fix until a long-term solution can be found.