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Knoll Club User Fees to Rise

The Town Council reconsidered a previous no vote to push through fee increases to offset revenue losses at the town utility.

Sometimes, it's a council's prerogative to change its mind.

The Parsippany Town Council reversed its previous at at its Tuesday meeting at . By unanimous vote, the body approved a move to raise the fees for members, non-members and guests.

Business Administrator Jasmine Lim explained that weather-related issues and revenue reductions in 2010 and 2011 hit the Knoll Club hard. In addition, Lim said the town is reducing the rent charged to its caterer (a bid is out for the catering assignment, she said). All told, the institution faces a projected deficit of about $300,000. 

Lim said the proposed user fee hikes are intended to make up some of the shortfall.

"Raising fees isn't enough to cover" the projected deficits, she said. "We're looking to cut costs as well."

The proposed ordinance would amend the Parks, Recreation Areas and Public Lands section of the township code to raise golfing fees for members and guests of the Knoll Country Clubs West and East. Most greens fees would go up by $3 for Parsippany residents and $6 for non-residents. Golf cart fees would rise between $1.00 and $1.50. Member registration for Knoll East would go from $30 to $35.

Because the Knoll is operated as a public utility, if the deficit was not dealt with by the council, the responsibility to cover the shortfall would belong to  taxpayers.

Council members Paul Carifi Jr., John Cesaro and Brian Stanton  voted the proposal down on Nov. 29, citing questions they needed answered. Apparently, they got their answers: The body voted unanimously this time around to approve the ordinance on first reading.

The final vote on the ordinance is expected to take place at the Feb. 14 council meeting. The public will have an opportunity to weigh in on the matter prior to the polling.

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