Buena Vista’s golf course to close as city reaches settlement years after defaulting on $9 million loan

Course will close on March 1

Vista Links Golf Course in Buena Vista, Virginia. (WSLS 10)

BUENA VISTA, Va. – After years of legal battles surrounding Buena Vista’s golf course, the course will close next month.

The city of Buena Vista announced on Friday that the city and ACA Financial have entered into a settlement agreement.

This is all related to the $9 million the city borrowed to build Vista Links Golf Course in 2005; however, the city later defaulted on the loan.

As part of the settlement, ACA will release any claims it has against the city and the city property and the golf course will be conveyed to them.

Also, the course will close on March 1.

Years ago, on Dec. 8, 2014, the Buena Vista City Council approved a resolution to seek a negotiated settlement with ACA to end the fiscal challenges related to the municipal golf course that was far less valuable than originally projected.

The City Council, through the Public Recreational Facilities Authority, had been attempting since then to negotiate a settlement with ACA, the bond insurer.

In previous attempts, ACA refused to negotiate and instead filed a lawsuit against the city.

In the suit, ACA threatened to seize control of city hall, which was listed as collateral.

In 2018, a federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit and about a year later, the U.S. District Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit upheld a previous ruling that dismissed the lawsuit.

In announcing the settlement, City Attorney Brian Kearney released the following statement:

This has been a long and difficult process, but council never wavered in their determination to resolve this in the best interests of the citizens of Buena Vista. With the golf course issues behind us, the City can move forward with downtown redevelopment and expanding economic opportunities within the City to build on recent successes and positive momentum.

Buena Vista City Attorney Brian Kearney