With the turn of the new year, most talk of grass around San Diego city hall tends to concern the cannabis variety, but last summer Mark Marney, deputy director of golf, took a different kind of trip.
According to a disclosure report filed the day after Christmas, Marney received free travel, food, and lodging worth a total of $1095, courtesy of the Toro Company, maker of lawnmowers and related golf course and irrigation equipment. Marney’s four-day tour began June 8 in Bloomington, Minnesota, with stops in Tomah and Sand Valley, Wisconsin. The purpose of the journey, per the document, was to “tour iconic golf courses and discuss course agronomic practices and tournament preparation.”
Marney also got a chance to “review the Toro Company’s Engineering and Product Development test and manufacturing process and facilities,” as well as to “provide feedback on current products and future products.” A year ago this month, Toro announced it had “finalized a 12-year equipment and tournament support agreement with the City of San Diego and Torrey Pines Golf Course.”
Said Marney in a company news release heralding the city’s deal with Toro and its distributor Turf Star: “Using top-notch Toro equipment, backed by the strong support of the team at Turf Star, allows us to put our best foot forward as we look to host some very important golf events in the next few years.”