Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Mt. Ogden Golf Course Update: The Standard Breaks It to Boss Godfrey Gently

Not the time for a knuckle-headed $70 million golf course makeover plan

Yet another fine editorial in this morning's Standard-Examiner, from which we lift these opening paragraphs:
A plan to build a hotel and condominium complex on top of Ogden's 36th Street as a way to pay for improvements on Ogden's struggling Mount Ogden Golf Course is one too many irons on the fairway for Junction City.
The city should say no to the $70 million plan for now. There are too many other pressing responsibilities for Ogden officials. They include a new Wal-Mart, the planned Riverfront development, and The Junction and its properties.
We are very skeptical that there is a market for time shares and condominiums in this severe recession. There's already no shortage of vacant buildings or stalled developments locally that were unveiled with optimistic forecasts. The fault of that is primarily the economic recession. Many projects stalled today were sound ideas so long as we were in traditional economic times.
We do not feel the economic climate -- this recession, far from over -- is favorable to a 350-unit hotel/condo complex at this time. If the city takes on a $70 million golf course improvement plan, Ogden will be biting off far more than it can chew.
Note to Boss Godfrey: Write this down, so you don't forget it. Finish those languishing city projects which you've already started. You've already bitten off more than you can chew. Demonstrate some common sense at least one time in your life. Don't spend the next year of your ever-dwindling administration as Utah's laughing stock, as you did with your urban flatland gondola. Don't launch another civil war in Ogden City.

Just a few more helpful hints from your old pal Rudi... and your friends at the Standard-Examiner (formerly your own personal "house propaganda organ.")

Comments, anyone?


OgdenLover said...

I can't help noticing two things:
1. The proposed hotel/condo plan looks a lot like the old Chris Peterson fiasco.
2. The SE STILL has not mentioned the 36th street water tower construction project.

beaver said...

Is it just me, or does every time the Gondola Examiner publish an editorial in favor of one of Godfrey's harebrained schemes it's a gushing, slobbering lovefest? And when they publish an editorial opposing one of his ideas, he's treated with the softest kid gloves and let down easy with plenty of consolations and caveats.

Curmudgeon said...


Charlie Trentelman has put up several posts on his SE blog dealing with the 36th St. water project. And he links to much earlier SE article reporting the project above 36th street. Just FYI.

Curmudgeon said...

Link to Trentelman's column on the 36th Street tanks story, which reprints the SE article of the 27th of May first reporting the tanks, is here .

Curmudgeon said...

The SE editorial is, seems to me, right on the money. And I'd l like to point out that predictions oft found here that the SE would "never" report the Envision Ogden story turned out, in the end, to be wrong. The SE was woefully late with the story it could have, should have, broken and pursued long ago... but it did, in the end, finally, report the story on the same day the SL Trib did. Complaints about non-coverage should, in fairness, be as loudly directed at the SL Trib as at the SE. Or nearly as loudly. [The SL Trib is not Ogden's home town paper. But still, it purports to cover Ogden and so should come in for criticism on these grounds too.]

Whether the SE [or the Trib] will do more with it down the road remains to be seen.

Anonymous said...

That, Mayor Godfrey, would be the final bell.

Stagger away before you hit the mat, pallooka.

Corruption, successful corruption, plays much harder than it looks, Mr. Mayor.
We suggest a more honest approach, when you come back to the ring for your final bout.

We love this town.

bullet sponge said...

An old article that makes some buried mention of 36th street as the location of water tanks isn't the same as the council being aware of it and having approved it. We'd need to see the minutes of their meeting to see what they actually did approve.

dan s. said...

Rudi, you nailed it as usual: "gently". Is there any sane person in Ogden who thinks this proposal would be viable even in good economic times?

George K. said...


"Me thinks thou dost protest too much" in defending the SE. You failed to mention that the SE had their article in the paper after the Salt Lake Tribune posted it on their website. You said, "And I'd like to point out that predictions oft found here that the SE would "never" report the Envision Ogden story turned out, in the end, to be wrong. The SE was woefully late with the story it could have, should have, broken and pursued long ago... but it did, in the end, finally, report the story on the same day the SL Trib did. Complaints about non-coverage should, in fairness, be as loudly directed at the SL Trib as at the SE. Or nearly as loudly. [The SL Trib is not Ogden's home town paper."

The SE reported the story after they were shamed into reporting it by the SL Tribune's websie post. I do agree that it should have been reported much sooner instead of waiting for Dan Schroeder to point out the questionable legality of donations to Blain Johnson's and Royal Eccles' campaigns by Envision Utah via Northern Utah Realtors in order to try to maintain some credibility. The SE failed to mention that Godfrey organized the Envision Ogden committee for his own purposes.

You overdo your "fairness" post, Curmudgeon. You should take into consideration your own credibiity. The SE only covered the story after the SL Tribune posted their story on their website.

The SE also refused to print Dan Schroeder's op ed piece.

just wondering said...

are there any laws that limit or make it illegal to use of public property such as city property to benefit someone politically.
or in this case use city property without cost to the users of the property to raise money for a specific political purpose and then redirecting those generated funds without reimbursing the city for the use of the property.

dan s. said...

just wondering,

Yes, there are such laws. They're a bit complex and not as comprehensive as you might like, but they do exist.

what would jesus say said...



Curmudgeon said...


As for the SE refusing to print Dan's piece, I criticized the paper for that inexplicable appalling decision when the editors made it, and several times since.

As for the rest: GK there were those here who stated with absolute certainty that the SE would "never" report the story. Never. They were wrong. It did. Thought that was worth pointing out.

The SE has not covered itself with glory on this particular issue, as I've said here, often, and said again above. But for whatever reason, it did finally, at long last, report it, and so the "never! never! never!" predictions were... well, wrong. That's all.

As for this: "You overdo your fairness post." Well, GK, I'm pretty old fashioned when it comes to fairness. I don't think you can have too much of it.

Trec Bronson said...

I'm surprised to see the SE going cautious on this nonsense, it is clearly just an end run to establishing the basic infrastructure for a future mountain gondola. Same plan, different color legos. 70 mil is a lot of coin in this economy. Anyone talking projects like this in this region at this time is delusional.

Monotreme said...

Some guy named "Jim Hutchins" wrote a letter to the editor about municipal elections:

Letter to the Editor

If you feel so inclined, go there and make a comment.

Yes, even you, Binford. Your comments should be read (along with the letter) in the print edition of the paper. I think it would be great if a wide variety of Ogden's citizens saw exactly what you bring to the table in terms of reasoned argument.

TLJ said...

Can we borrow Dan Hannen to sit in on one or two mayor-city council meetings? Maybe take up a collection for a speaking engagement, so he can give the mayor the same "what-for" he gave the PM, in re his hare-brained schemes and proposals and back pedalling - and see Hizonnah's reaction to rounds of "hear, hear" around the room.


Anonymous said...

Here is one persons perspective: let the golf course be.
Fill all vacant properties from the old Fred Meyer, to the storefronts along Washington, to the new downtown condos.

Finish the Riverwalk, and put in the damned ice climbing tower already.

Never build any higher on the benches, leave that as a legacy for the grandkids; k?

Did we mention that we love this town?

Note to regular readers: we are starting a once weekly column, called: Ask An Off-White Magickian.

Watch for it, here and in other Ogden news outlets.


"...and put in the damned ice climbing tower already."

Until i read that, I'd thought you might have something going on between your ears, Svengali. But no longer.

The Ice Tower is possibly the dumbest of all the numbskull Godfrey projects.

Most sensible folks already know that.

WTF is wrong with you?

Anonymous said...

Our gripe with the Mayor is not his pie-in-the-sky adventure sports proposals. We like all of the Adventure Sports proposals. Every single one.
We use one of them, the Flowrider, as part of our daily routine.

We like to ice climb.

We don't really care how they are payed for, or whether they are payed for or not.

Money functions that way. Ogden can afford anything. Wealth rises to meet those who are accepting of it.

We think the whole idea of turning downtown into a snowboarder zoo, complete with li'l skater kids on every corner, is humorous.
We are pro humor.

As for the golf course, the construction gondola, and ugly bulldozers, we refuse to let anyone mess up that section of the east bench with any development. He simply cannot do it. We have our own agenda as regards that section of mountain.
Those who will, understand.

We have our own vision of what downtown Ogden could be; adventure sports are a small part of it.
We could tell you what Ogden is going to look like in a couple more years, we doubt however, that most really want to know.

One might notice that our vision for Ogden comes closer to reality every month; life is that way with us. We simply get what we want, by and large.

For the record, we did not get where we are by being "sensible".
That is our harried accountants job. We got where we are by being lucky and bold.
Try it.

what would jesus say said...

Payed? Really?

Karl Marx said...

"We don't really care how they are payed for, or whether they are payed for or not.
Money functions that way. Ogden can afford anything. Wealth rises to meet those who are accepting of it."

Exactly right. I couldn't be more in agreement.

Anonymous said...

Attitude towards wealth matters.
If you want to move to the toniest area in the world, you can.
Going there will raise your income.
You may need to adjust your mind to a different money consciousness.
People who do, can.

The streets of my country are almost paved with gold; you just need to allow it to flow your way.

Likewise, if you aspire to live in a poverty stricken town in the deep south, or outside Scipio, your income will tend to adjust accordingly.

Money comes. Do not send it away.

Say What? said...

"Money comes. Do not send it away."

Hmmmm... Sounds like something spoken by somebody who lives off mommy's trust fund.

Don't choke on your silver spoon, svengali.

Matthew 6 said...

Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.


No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You can not serve both God and Mammon.

Anonymous said...

Say what: in this instance your intuition appears flawed.
Do not allow your current bitter cup to poison future drinks.

You also appear to not be a good listener; this is a lazy habit.
You sound like you are regretting the choices you made, and now blame some ethereal Them for your tight straits.

Note: them would be us.

Other sentients, those perceptive and without the financial victim mentality will know; those not thus awake will never know.

When you live in one of the richest countries in history, during an era of unbridled wealth, it is only ones attitude towards money, and one knowing how it prefers to be treated, that decides ones financial fate.

One laughs; it is the only tenable attitude in a universe that manifests thus.

ozboy said...


Sometimes your posts put me in the mind of an elitist who borders on being effete.

You also seem rather lawyerly, and if that be the case I would worry that some of your arguments may just sail clean over the heads of your Ogden jurors.

In any event keep it coming as you are both entertaining and educational.

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