Torrey Pines (Collateral)

Should you ever wonder if your city, county, state or federal government were acting in a peculiar manner, take heart, there's always the City of San Diego and its corruption woes to warm your heart.

It was one thing to try and push through a clubhouse redo for the 2008 even though the golfers don't care. But this, this is downright wacky:

City Attorney Michael Aguirre was stunned to find out this week that the North Course at the Torrey Pines golf complex was being used as collateral to pay off bonds. It turns out he was only scratching the surface.

Aguirre said yesterday he discovered in his review of city documents that the Torrey Pines South Course – the site of the 2008 U.S. Open – and Balboa Park Golf Course are also being used as collateral and could conceivably be lost should the financially troubled city default on the bonds or file for bankruptcy.

“All of the golf courses are at risk, and none of this was told to the public,” Aguirre said. “It's just incredible.”

Under the current terms, more than $42 million in debt needs to be paid before all three courses are clear of their obligation. The bond tied to the South Course was $18 million, as of the end of the fiscal year in June 2005, and the terms run through fiscal year 2011. The North Course bond was $15.7 million at the end of the last fiscal year and goes until 2009. Balboa Park is committed until 2022 on a debt of $9.5 million.