The Parsippany Town Council voted 4-1 to cancel the financially struggling Knoll Golf Utility's debt to the water and sewer utility at its Tuesday night regular meeting at Town Hall.
The issue was briefly mentioned at the Dec. 11 council agenda meeting.
Councilman Michael dePierro, who is the body's Knoll liaison, said in the past, when the golf club routinely operated with surpluses, the township sometimes used some of the utility's excess funds to offset deficits in other areas of municipal government. Wiping away the debt, he said, would make things even and reduce the burden hanging over the golf club.
A resolution authorizing the erasure of the Knoll Country Club's 2012 water and sewer receivable balances, as expected, came up during this Tuesday's meeting.
The document outlined the debt, which covered expenses for both Knoll East and West clubs, including water intensive irrigation projects. The water debt in all was listed as $128,159.39; due for sewer fees was $3,766.32. The overall total was $131,925.71.
Councilman Jonathan Nelson objected to the debt cancellation.
"Last week, I made a motion to defer payment until such time that the golf utility could afford to pay its water bill," he recalled. "It wasn't seconded.
"I feel cancelling out a debt from one utility to another isn't the proper way to do things," he explained. "Most years, the golf utility runs a surplus. There was no reason why, when it was experiencing better [financial] times, that it couldn't pay its share of the water bill."
Nelson said the payment could have been paid back over years, if necessary, once the golf utility again was solvent.
Patch's queries to the administration regarding how much the Knoll is in arrears were not answered.
"As it stands, about $132,000 was cancelled out—without discussion," he said.