The Ontario Town Board proposed an “outside the box” idea back in February, 20921, to purchase the Ontario Golf Course and use it for Recreation and Greenspace.
The town was looking to purchase the 161.25 acres for $1.1 million. It was meant to be an extension of the current Parks and Recreation Department, including using the pool area, golf course, and party house/events center.
The board felt that the public should decide on the proposal with a outright vote, rather than a permissive referendum, which would require petitions.
A bond was proposed for $750,000 with $400,000 in available funds.
Ontario Town Board Councilman Joe Catalano, one of 5 members of the Ontario Town Board was adamant that the idea should go down.
The vote, held on April 21st, was defeated, 714 No to 455 yes.
Councilman Catalano responded to the vote: “I would like to thank the Wayne County Board of Elections for efficiently processing all those ballots in 8 hours, this obviously was not their first rodeo. I would like to thank ALL those voters who showed great commitment to our town and came out to have their voices heard on a not so pleasant day. Now let’s move on to the issues facing our great community.”
Town Supervisor, Frank Robusto, who was a big supporter of the project, accepted the outcome of the public vote.
“One of the most important aspects of democracy is the right to vote and to accept that decision of the voters. The voters have decided, and we respect their decision, just as we, as a town board, respect decisions made as a team, to bring forth opportunities and let the residents decide.”
“The town board will continue to explore prospects for the town’s growth and present them to the voters to decide on how to shape the town’s future. We will, as always, remain professional and approachable.”
The Ontario Golf Club has been open since 1929.