Navistar tourney lacks thousands in Prattville money

PRATTVILLE, AL (WSFA) - "Obviously, financially it does affect you," says Navistar LPGA Tournament Director, Jonathan Romeo.

He admits, not having the $240,000 dollars from the City of Prattville affects his bottom line. But it's not enough to throw the event off course.

"In the areas hopefully where we've been able to cut back a little bit, we'll be fine. We'll be good," he says.

Tournament officials understand Prattville's financial constraints. But it never caused Romeo to think twice about having the tournament in Prattville.

"This tournament's home is Prattville. It's not leaving, this is where we want it."

Despite not having the $240,000 dollars, directors say spectators shouldn't notice a difference.

"We've made small little tweaks in some areas, which we really haven't changed a whole lot," adds Romeo.

Prattville Mayor Bill Gillespie is waiting for the city council to approve his 2012 budget, which restores the money for the Navistar tournament.

He says spending cuts in other areas allowed him to re-appropriate the funds.

"It'll help us do bigger and better things," adds Romeo.

Some locals we talked to agree, the event is a must-have for the community.

"I do think it's a good investment. The money brings good national recognition to the city and exposure. Definitely believe it pays off with the hotels and the restaurants also," says Prattville resident Mike Westhoff.

"You couldn't pay for the amount of exposure we get for this tournament here. It's a wonderful event for the city of Prattville," says resident, Bo Evans.

Mayor Gillespie says one of the reasons it was hard to fund Navistar this year was because two tournaments fell in the same fiscal year budget, which doubled the amount they would have to pay.

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