Brevard Commissioners Vote To Divest County’s Savannahs, Spessard Holland and Habitat Golf Courses
By Space Coast Daily // March 21, 2018
BREVARD COUNTY COMMISSION MEETING REPORT
BREVARD COUNTY • VIERA, FLORIDA – The Brevard County Commission voted 4-1 during Tuesday’s meeting to approve transferring The Savannahs Golf Course to The Savannahs at Sykes Creek Homeowners Association, possibly by May 1.
Commissioners Curt Smith, Christine Isnardi, Jim Barfield and Rita Pritchard all greenlighted the deal, with John Tobia casting the lone dissenting vote.
Brevard County had previously turned over the management of the course to a private for-profit golf course management firm, who then gave the course back to the county, unable to turn a profit.
The Savannahs has deed restrictions under which the course cannot be sold by the county, and would revert back to a homeowners’ association if the county abandons it.
The website of the Savannahs golf course describes the Brevard County-owned 18-hole, par-72 courses as being minutes away from Kennedy Space Center, Port Canaveral, Cocoa Beach attractions and Orlando Airport.
“Listed by Golf Digest in Places to Play, this course is a great value and rewarding to a game well played. The epitome of southern style golf courses and situated in a natural Florida savannah—this course is aptly named.”
Under the new agreement, The Savannahs Golf Course will revert to The Savannahs at Sykes Creek Homeowners Association, in conjunction with a community development district that would lease the golf course from the association, for a term of at least 25 years.
This deal calls for Brevard County to provide $700,000 to the community development district to pay for deferred maintenance and back a $1.2 million line of credit earmarked for golf course operations and capital improvements with a fixed interest rate of 2.75 percent.
In return, The Savannahs at Sykes Creek Homeowners Association cannot sell the property for at least 10 years or until funds used from the line of credit is paid in full.
In considering the fate of the county-owned Spessard Holland in Melbourne Beach and The Habitat in Grant-Valkaria, the commission agreed unanimously to allow Golf Brevard to take over the operation for both courses no later than Oct. 1.
Golf Brevard, led by Tom Becker, made a pitch to take over the operations of both Spessard Holland The Habitat courses.
In this agreement, Brevard County will provide Golf Brevard with transition costs, including deferred maintenance and potential losses totaling $250,000, with $100,000 payable by Nov. 1 and the balance by Dec. 27.
Once Golf Brevard’s reserves reach $360,000, it would then be required to start to repay the county’s $250,000 loan.
The Habitat is an 18-hole, par-72 course and Spessard Holland is an 18-hole, par-67 course.
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