LANSING – Lt. Governor Brian Calley presented the proclamation from the Governor’s office declaring June is Pure Michigan Golf Month, and then he told the members of the Michigan Golf Alliance that they are having a great impact.
“The generosity in the $118 million in charitable impact from golf in Michigan alone is so great,” he said at the Michigan Golf Industry Legislative Day on the Capitol Lawn Thursday.
“You are using your facilities to make communities across the state stronger. The utilization of your facilities makes an impact far beyond the impact of people playing rounds of golf. The economic impact is massive. Golf is providing quality of life enhancements to our communities. It is really great what you do.”
The Michigan Golf Alliance is made up of the Michigan Golf Course Association, the Michigan Golf Course Superintendents Association, the Michigan Section PGA, the Golf Association of Michigan, and the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation. Members of the Alliance spread out around the Capitol to visit each legislator in their Senate and House offices, and legislators and staff members were also treated to a “lunch at the turn” in a large tent on the Capitol Lawn.
Part of the message presented was the numbers; $4.2 billion in total economic impact in Michigan from the industry, wage contributions of $1.4 billion, 58,000 jobs and the $118 million in charitable impact.
The other part was in regard to legislation of concern to the golf industry.
Kevin McKinley, director of golf at Treetops Resort in Gaylord and the President of the Michigan Section of the PGA, said the legislators listened, enjoyed lunch and offered advice for dealing with political issues. He called it a rewarding event that helps legislators and golf industry members.
“I talked with one of the legislators about the minimum wage law and he looked at me and asked ‘What are you going to do? What are you going to do to make sure that bill fails?’” McKinley said. “It made me kind of take a step back and I realized it really does matter if I write a letter. It really does matter if my employees who work for tips write letters. That does matter to the legislators. It was refreshing to hear, that me, not as the Michigan Section president, but as an employee of a business in Northern Michigan, that my voice is actually being heard by legislators.”