President Donald Trump's golf course in West Palm Beach, Florida, is asking the county for rent relief for part of its nearly $90,000 monthly bill, claiming it has been negatively impacted by coronavirus stay-at-home orders in the state.
As The Palm Beach Post reports, Trump International Golf Club financial director Ed Raymundo wrote in a June 5 letter that the Palm Beach County stay-at-home order issued on March 25 was at the beginning of their busiest season, which has had a major impact on its income.
The golf course pays $88,338 each month to lease the public land and is looking for a partial deferment of that money.
The county has deferred rent for cafes and coffee shops that are situated inside county-owned parks and buildings but hasn't moved on the latest request from the president's property, which requires approval by the county commission.
Raymundo had also reached out to the county on March 25, the day that the county ordered the golf park closed. His email requested guidance on how to handle the rent payment during the closure.
"This mandate has resulted in the cancellation of events and forced the Club to close many of it's amenities leaving limited services available to our members," Raymundo wrote. "In addition, with many New York-based members, the Governor's most recent order requiring individuals traveling from the tri-state area to self-quarantine further hampers our operation. Your direction in this is greatly appreciated."
Congress passed a bill that allocates funds to businesses impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, but Democrats included a provision that prevents people in the administration, including Trump, who has downplayed recent COVID-19 surges, from being able to use the funds.Reportedly, Trump's businesses have been significantly impacted by the pandemic because they are all based in the hospitality industry. Prior to the country-wide social distancing requirements, the president's brands were already losing business, and Forbes estimated that Trump's worth had dropped from just over $3 billion to just over $2 billion.
To combat the drop in business, workers have been laid off and flowers, chocolates, and newspapers have been eliminated at his New York hotel. His Chicago hotel has reportedly reduced electricity usage to lower its financial burden.
Of his three clubs in Florida, the West Palm Beach 27-hole course is the one most commonly frequented by Trump. It sits a few miles from his Mar-a-Lago club, where he has held parties and entertained political allies during his tenure as president.
The club has paid its rent through June.