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'National Golf Day' Set for May 13 to Support Golf in California


The California Alliance for Golf has designated May 13 as "National Golf Day." The group is hoping that a groundswell of support from state golfers as well as those from around the nation will help convince lawmakers not to broaden a sales tax on the game.

Earlier this year the California Alliance for Golf won a critical first round against a proposal to broaden the sales tax to include golf green fees and cart rentals, lessons, and club membership fees and dues. But with the state's ongoing budget woes, the golf tax is back on the table.

A report is expected soon from a blue-ribbon tax commission appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and the State Legislature recommending ways to restructure California taxes. It then will be up to the governor and legislature to propose new laws, likely including another version of the golf tax.

With the support of the National Golf Course Owners Association, the group wants Golden State golfers to call their legislators and governor to emphasize why golf is important to them and the state's economy. To California alone, the game means:

* 160,000 jobs in golf and in hospitality (hotel/restaurant/retail) and landscape employment;

* Key financial support via public course fees for vital city and county parks programs for kids and seniors;

* $6.9 billion in revenue, in 2006, to the California economy, contributing substantially to the state through tourism, property taxes, income taxes and taxes on golf merchandise.

A tax on playing golf would hurt golfers and a golf industry that's already struggling in today's tough economy.

Golfers who want to get involved can visit www.forecalifornia.com. Go to the "Get Involved" section for instructions on how to find and contact your legislator and/or the Governor and explain how a tax will hurt golfers, accelerate the closure of courses, and threaten a vital state industry.