Beck is scheduled to begin at the course on Feb. 1. If his obligations at the Neosho Municipal Golf Course conclude prior to that time, he may start earlier, said City Administrator Dennis Pyle.
"My first concern is to improve the course, the way it looks and its playability from day to day," Beck told The Times. "On any day, I want it to be consistent and good. I looked at a lot of little things today. "My first concern is creating the best public golf course in the area."
According to City Administrator Dennis Pyle, Beck will be in charge of all aspects of running the course, from maintaining the course condition to running the clubhouse. The addition of a new clubhouse would depend, in part, on how financing to rebuild the City Park Casino took shape.
Talks are continuing about having the construction technology class at the Scott Regional Technology Center build a 28-by-60-foot building for a clubhouse. The building will go on the edge of the #4 tee box and should not affect the space or shape of the course itself.
Pyle projected the new clubhouse would be ready by May 2014.
Mike Vogt, the St. Louis consultant hired by the city to address turf loss issues, reviewed the work he has done since September 2011. Vogt said application of a fungicide, adding less sand and using vertical movers in hot periods to allow more water to reach the roots improved the greens.
Gypsum was added to neutralize some of the salt in the effluent used for irrigation. The watering strategy was also altered from nightly to 40 minutes and then allow the turf to dry for several days.
The mowing height on the greens was also raised. Vogt said initially the change slowed play on the green but allowed better root establishment. At present, play on the greens is again faster.
In the future, the addition of circulating fans, especially on hole #2, should help the greens. Vogt said #2 seems to have a number of problems unlike the other holes at the course, resulting in poor root development. The final decision will be up to Beck, he said.
Fans could prove useful for the greens on holes #2, #6, #8 and #14, said Pyle, requiring four or five fans. He expected to phase in purchase of fans over several years.
During the next year of his contract, Vogt said he would like to focus on improving the condition of the course's fairways.
The golfers present voiced concerns over the way the roughs are cut and the drainage on hole #13. Yates suggested using a trencher and installing drainage tile.
Beck asked groups that play together regularly to share ideas about improving the course. He would like to have as much communication with golfers as possible. Pyle said the city would like to have a more active golf advisory board.
By February 2013, Beck said he plans to have moved to Monett. He expects to work long hours at the golf course, checking issues like irrigation in the evenings, and wants to be close by.
Mayor Jim Orr thanked the golfers for staying with the city course over the last four years of challenging conditions at the city facility. Pyle added the street department planned to finish pouring concrete golf cart paths on holes #3, #15 and #18 on the west side of the course over the winter.
Mike Knight, the current director of golf at Windmill Ridge, also attended the meeting. Knight told The Times he would like to continue in some capacity at the course after his job is phased out. He plans to sit down in the coming weeks with Beck and Pyle to determine what his role will be.