Town recruiting for golf course planning committee & cable committee – start applying (Updated)

Selectmen approved charges for two new committees and can now accept applications. The board hopes to appoint members to the St. Mark’s Golf Course Master Plan Committee in December. They are also seeking volunteers for the Cable Television Committee.

No deadline has been posted for applications yet. But if they get enough applications, they could potentially make appointments at their December 13th meeting. So, if you are interested, act soon.

Last week, selectmen approved the official charges for both committees.

The golf course committee’s main purpose is to work with the community to help advise selectmen of best potential uses for the 60 acre property. The idea is to better inform voters of how the Town could use the land.

Selectmen believe that information is important to Town Meeting voters this spring when deciding whether or not to purchase the land.

Two commenters told the board that they believe the Town should pursue preserving the golf course. Town Administrator Mark Purple advised that if people want the Golf Course preserved, they should be talking to St. Mark’s School.

Still, selectmen acknowledged that they have heard the request from others or requests to keep at least 9 holes. Selectman John Rooney told the public that determining how to use the land is what the committee will be looking at. And he reminded that everyone will get a chance to give their input.

The Cable Television Committee will advise selectmen on the licensing and operation of cable television in the town. They will work on negotiating licenses with cable or similar telecommunications providers. For their full charge, click here.

The primary charge for the golf course committee is broken down as: 

  • Review the term sheet negotiated by the Board of Selectmen with St. Mark’s School for the purchase of the Golf course property;
  • Review the work product to date of the Public Safety Study Committee;
  • Engage abutters to the Golf Course property, Town departments, and other interested parties as to future needs of the Town;
  • Identify pros and cons of future needs, balancing the needs of the Town and those of other interested parties;
  • Engage a consultant to coordinate a planning charrette for the Golf Course property. Make recommendation to the Board of Selectmen for awarding such a contract. The charrette should be conducted prior to any Town Meeting where the acquisition of the Golf Course property is to be discussed/voted upon;
  • Provide periodic updates to the Board of Selectmen, and solicit their input as the process develops.

Selectmen are looking to appoint two abutting residents and two other Citizens-At-Large. That’s in addition to one member from each of the following: the Recreation Commission, the Council on Aging, and the Open Space and Preservation Commission. See the full charge here.

There are also volunteer openings for 13 other positions in Southborough’s Town government. Click here to check them out.

To volunteer for one of the committees or other openings, click here for the form. Submit the form, a letter, and resume to the Board of Selectmen. You can drop it off or mail it to 17 Common Street or email

Updated (11/21/16 6:15 pm): I originally posted the draft charges and noted selectmen’s changes. After the story posted, the Town released the approved charges, so I replaced the links.

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John Smith
7 years ago

I’m very disappointed with Mark Purples response, the Town can preserve 75 % of that parcel after the Public Safety Complex is built by using CPC funds but they are not going to do so. Why overburden the tax payers if CPC funds are available?

The BOS is pro development and do not understand the true meaning of preservation and open space. Not only is this the gateway to our Town but it abuts arguably the most historic and beautiful street in our Town.

It breaks my heart that the BOS doesn’t recognize the need to put this parcel in conservation to protect it in perpetuity.

Annette Flaherty's
7 years ago

Not sure who is making the request to keep 9 holes? It doesn’t seem to be someone who plays it. The entire St. Mark’s course only has 9 holes.

David Parry
7 years ago

The suggestion was to keep the course as a 9 hole course, but to shorten holes 1 and 9, and make it a municipal course. This is a reluctant compromise to allow space for a new public safety complex.

Holes 1 and 9 would become par 3 instead of par 4. Tee 1 and green 9 would move south. Also the existing golf club building might be moved south, to a large area of “rough” north of the central woodland. The existing septic field serving Woodward school might be retained.

This allows a site for a new public safety building to the north, close to Woodward school.

This is just one option among all the many options that the Selectman want considered in a long range plan. Some of the possible uses being touted for the site are decades away and expensive. This option saves the bulk of the huge investment that has already been made in this land over many years. This option might be viable right away.

Golf has value as a sport, obviously. But you don’t have to be a golfer to advocate for saving the course. Many residents don’t want to lose the golf course because it is very beautiful and provides the most significant scenic views to our town. These views are truly unique because they are open to public view from our main entry road leading into the town center. This adds value to our whole town, as all real estate agents know. What other town has a beautiful golf course near it’s historic center ?

The option to shorten the course is a reluctant compromise, if there are no other options for a public safety complex.

7 years ago

Love the idea of trying to save a municipal course… even if it does drop to a Par 32 or 33. As a golfer, that’s still an ok track with plenty of challenges and practice opportunities…….
and I fully agree with all of David Parry’s other comments: the center of our town conveys a simply wonderful first impression and I for one would hate to see it diminished.

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