Lansing City Council launches investigation into Groesbeck golf course entrance


LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Last night, 6 News showed you crews as they started the process of digging up Ormond Park to build a new road to the Groesbeck golf course.

Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero says Groesbeck is hemorrhaging money and the only way to get more people to go there is by making it easier to get to.

But today we learned the Lansing City Council has launched an investigation to find out how the Groesbeck golf course entrance was put on the latest master plan in the first place.

The investigation will start Monday at the Lansing City Council Committee of the Whole meeting.

City Council will investigate whether or not the 2015/2020 master plan actually indicated the construction of the new entranceway through Ormond Park but Mayor Bernero says City Council is way off course.

“This is a complete waste of time and resources,” said Mayor Virg Bernero.

“For me this is disingenuous,” Lansing City Council Vice-President Carol Wood stated.

The construction at Ormond Park is already underway but the controversy over it lingers.

“When we did some investigation we had determined that the documentation that council received back in 2015 when the master plan was approved, didn’t call for an entrance,” Wood added.

Wood insists council members were never told that the new entrance to Groesbeck golf course was added to the final copy of the 2015/2020 master plan two years ago.

“I think there’s enough evidence out there that the mayor didn’t go through the process, that this was added based on the mayor pushing the parks director to add this to a plan that had not been vetted,” said Wood.

However, Mayor Bernero claims city council was aware and then reminded last month.

That’s when Bernero says City Attorney James Smiertka sent a memo to him and city council members that stated the mayor had gotten the clear from the finance department to move forward with the project.

“The question for them is Mr. and Mrs. council member, if you got this memo from the city attorney way back on June 14th, why would you be putting on the agenda something about legal action against the mayor if the city’s attorney has told you clearly the mayor has the authority to do it?” Bernero stated.

But Wood says neither she or any other member ever saw that memo.

“As far as I know we’ve never received this,” said Wood.

So what happens next?

Bernero says construction on Ormond Park will continue regardless of this investigation.

As for the city council, they have the option to seek an injunction to stop progress on the road but for now plan to see where the investigation leads once it officially starts next Monday.

It’s on the agenda at the Committee of the Whole meeting at 5 p.m.

That meeting is open to the public if you would like attend.

We will of course continue to follow this story and will bring you any updates as we get them.

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