NGCOA Accompanies Other Golf Leaders to Capitol Hill for Second National Golf Day
Participants Highlight Contributions of U.S. Golf Industry to Society
In a series of meetings on Capitol Hill May 13, the leaders of 11 of golf’s most prominent allied associations carried the message of the U.S. golf industry’s very significant economic and social contributions during the second annual National Golf Day. As part of this leadership group, the NGCOA brought a contingent of six and met with ten members of Congress and their staffs.
The impetus for the inaugural National Golf Day in 2008 was the industry’s blatant exclusion from disaster relief legislation passed in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Despite spending time with numerous officials on Capitol Hill last May, golf courses were once again omitted from relief measures designed to help citizens and business owners impacted by last year’s devastating floods and storms in the Midwest. Add to that the damaging comments recently made by our elected representatives about preventing TARP-fund recipients from hosting or sponsoring golf events, and it’s obvious that there is much work still to be done in Washington.
“It’s no secret that the current recession, subsequent corporate belt-tightening and political grandstanding by some of our elected officials has deeply impacted business-related meetings, events and performance incentives. And the trickle-down effect that this is having at many golf courses is serious,” said Mike Hughes, NGCOA CEO. “Our discussions in Washington and other efforts by the golf industry have gone a long way toward securing existing relationships with influential members of Congress, quelling recent rhetoric and garnering newfound respect for the contributions of our industry.” (For more, click here. )
A study released last year at the inaugural National Golf Day, the 2005 Golf Economy Report, quantified golf’s annual direct economic impact as $76 billion, and highlighted the fact that the industry provides 2 million jobs and $61 billion in wage income. The study also found that golf generates more than $3.5 billion annually for charities across the country. Throughout the day, the golf industry leaders highlighted that the game’s impact on society could best be viewed through three perspectives: economic, human and environmental. Summaries of the results of the 2005 Golf Economy Report in these three areas are available by clicking here.
“This is a very important day for the U.S. golf industry,” said Steve Mona, World Golf Foundation CEO. “Golf is a great pastime for millions of participants and fans, but it is much more than that. As a leading industry, golf is a powerful economic engine in our country and we’re delighted to be able to meet today with members of Congress and their staffs to communicate golf’s very positive impact on our society.”
In addition to the National Golf Course Owners Association, the organizations represented at May 13’s National Golf Day activities include the American Society of Golf Course Architects, Club Managers Association of America, Golf Course Builders Association of America, Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, LPGA, National Club Association, PGA of America, PGA TOUR, USGA and World Golf Foundation.
In addition to the scheduled meetings with members of Congress, industry leaders participated in the seventh The First Tee Congressional Breakfast. More than 50 members of Congress joined golf’s leaders to learn more about the positive impact this preeminent youth development organization is having on young people throughout the country.
Also in attendance were Fred Couples and Greg Norman, captains of The Presidents Cup’s U.S. and International Teams, respectively, and World Golf Hall of Fame member Judy Rankin.