Written by Juan Sebastian Fragozo
The pandemic has reinvigorated certain activities and sports, one of them is golf, becoming more popular due to social distancing, and the fact that it is a sport played outside with fresh air as well as beautiful surroundings. Sprawling, socially distanced golf courses were one of the first “safe” spaces that were able to get back to business, and interest in the sport quickly followed. Since June there have been over 50 million incremental rounds of golf played, according to the National Golf Foundation. Even though it is booming in popularity, golf is now being threatened in California thanks to the efforts of Democrat politicians.
If passed, AB 672, proposed by Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (CA-58), would rezone “certain sites used as a golf course to also allow for residential and open-space use in accordance with specified requirements.” The bill targets the State publicly owned golf courses (22% of the total), but it will also affect the private golf clubs.
The Southern California Golf Association calls AB 672 “the most damaging piece of legislation re golf to be filed in a generation.”
The goal of the bill is to transform the golf courses into affordable housing by:
- Removing them from the protections of the Public Park Preservation Act.
- Providing an exemption to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Mandating a one-size-fits-all zoning element.
- Singling golf as the ONLY open space/recreational activity for which these exemptions and facilitations apply, literally targeting them for development to the exclusion of all other open space/recreational activities.
Californians that enjoy golf at public and private golf courses and have taken the sport as a way to relax or escape from these difficult times now face the challenge of defending their sport from this proposed bill and from Democrat Assemblymember Cristina Garcia.
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