Fate of Moundsville Country Club Rests in Shareholders’ Hands
Editor’s note: Story has been updated to reflect that the Moundsville Country Club is a for-profit enitity.
MOUNDSVILLE — Shareholders in the Moundsville Country Club are being contacted to determine the future of the 81-year-old institution after the club has received a purchase offer from the Regional Economic Development Partnership.
The partnership, commonly referred to as “RED,” offered $8.025 million in July 2019 to buy the country club and its 163.5 acres of land just south of Moundsville along W.Va. 2. The letter of intent from RED has a closing date of Dec. 31, 2021, club officials said.
As of this month, the country club’s shareholders — numbering in the hundreds — are being tracked down and contacted to vote on the club’s future. If the club is able to get the necessary votes from shareholders, the sale will move forward; however, a failure to receive the necessary number of votes to sell the property could terminate the deal.
Since the Moundsville Country Club was established in 1940, its original shareholders have passed away, leaving their shares to have been sold, inherited, or transferred in other ways.
In total, 782 shares were purchased by about 600 people, and currently the country club is in the process of identifying their current owners, said David Buzzard, president of the Moundsville Country Club’s Board of Directors.
Buzzard noted the fate of the country club now rests with the shareholders.
“It’s our position that if it does get approved for sale, it will benefit the entire county,” Buzzard said. “… The Regional Economic Development (Partnership is) tasked by the three counties it represents — Ohio, Marshall, and Wetzel counties — with trying to recruit business and industry, which will, in turn, provide jobs to the residents of the area.
“Right now, we’re making a good-faith effort to contact the … shareholders; that’s the process we’re in right now, is trying to notify people, many of whom are dead,” Buzzard added. “I don’t say that to be flippant, but it comes down to, ‘This guy died in California, he didn’t leave a will, who gets to vote for that share?’ Those types of things.”
When asked what the club’s future would be if it is sold, Buzzard said RED would need to comment on its own behalf as to what plans the agency might have. Officials with RED did not return several messages last week seeking comment. Attorney Dan Guida, who represents the country club, declined to comment.
The issue of the club’s shareholders also is the subject of a legal complaint filed by Guida and currently before Marshall County Circuit Judge Jeff Cramer. The matter, set to be heard this summer, asks Cramer to determine a series of questions pertaining to the legality of the Moundsville Country Club issuing certificates of stock to shareholders in 1940, and whether the board of directors is obligated to follow the votes of the shareholders.
According to a schedule from Cramer’s office of how the legal matter will be handled, the judge has a target date of Aug. 1 to rule on those questions.
Shareholders will vote on the sale by the end of this year. If the sale goes through, closing would take place in January, and dissolution and liquidation of assets will occur over the following spring and summer.