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SPORTS WEEKEND

Marty Tregnan: a Friend Indeed

March 28, 1997|JIM HODGES

The passing of Marty Tregnan, 79, on Tuesday should not go unmentioned, because golfers on Los Angeles' municipal courses had no greater friend.

Tregnan, president emeritus of the L.A. Municipal Golf Assn. and Griffith Park representative to the Department of Parks and Recreation's golf advisory committee, worked for more than three decades with three missions, according to Craig Kessler, chairman of the committee.

"He wanted to make sure golf was kept affordable, that it was available to all classes and races and to keep public control of public property," Kessler said.

Tregnan's work went as far back as the 1950s, when he lobbied the men's golf clubs of some of the city courses to remove "Caucasians-only" clauses.

When Mayor Richard Riordan, in a fit of post-election privatization passion in 1994, floated the idea of turning over the operations of the city's municipal courses to American Golf, a management company, Tregnan assembled as many people as he could find in a room at Griffith Park to marshal lobbying forces that beat back the move.

And he opposed every increase in greens fees as attempts to take golf from the masses, arguing that the courses earn $4 million to $5 million a year for the city and that was enough.

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