Borough extends golf pro’s contract


By Andreas Yilma, Staff Writer

Hop Brook Golf Course pro Bryan Nixon, right, talks with assistant golf pro John Sevivas at the course in Naugatuck on May 12. Borough officials recently approved a new six-year contract for Nixon. –ANDREAS YILMA

NAUGATUCK — Borough officials have approved a new contract that keeps Bryan Nixon the golf pro at Hop Brook Golf Course through 2026.

The Board of Mayor and Burgesses approved the contract early this month. The contract is retroactive to Jan. 1 and covers through Dec. 31, 2026.

Nixon, 53, of Naugatuck, has been the pro at Hop Brook since 2017. A Naugatuck native, Nixon grew up playing at the nine-hole municipal course. He said he’s very excited to stay at Hop Brook, a place he noted is very close his heart.

“I learned the game here as a kid,” Nixon said. “My father played here. My grandfather played here.”

Nixon is responsible for overseeing the course, managing the daily operations and personnel at the pro shop, and enforcing course rules, among other duties. He reports to the public works director.

According to his contract, Nixon’s work year begins on April 1 and runs through Nov. 30. His weekly salary is $1,000 this year. His salary increases each year of the contract to $1,150 in 2026.

For any time Nixon works before April 1 or after Nov. 30, he will be paid a per diem hourly rate based on his weekly salary.

Nixon also receives a payment for every golf cart transaction up to 15,000 transactions. Under the contract, he gets $1.25 the first two years per transaction, $1.50 in the third and fourth years, $1.75 in the fifth year and $2 in the sixth year.

Nixon is also be eligible for a $2,500 bonus if revenue from the golf course is between $600,000 and $650,000, and a $5,000 bonus if revenue is over $650,000, according to the contract.

Hop Brook Golf Course pro Bryan Nixon talks to a customer on the phone at the pro shop in Naugatuck on May 12. Borough officials recently approved a new six-year contract for Nixon. –ANDREAS YILMA

Nixon is not eligible for benefits, such as paid sick days, vacation days or health insurance, according to the contract.

Nixon, who hopes to finish his career in the borough, said the number of people playing golf has increase during the COVID-19 pandemic. He wants to keep those new players, continue moving the course forward, and help people learn the game.

“There’s a lot of new players in the game,” Nixon said. “We’re doing the best to retain them.”

Mayor N. Warren “Pete” Hess said Nixon has been doing an excellent job and revenue at the course are up.

Hess said officials agreed to the six-year deal because they want Nixon to retire in the borough.

“I don’t want to lose him,” Hess said. “I want to retain him and make sure he’s happy in Naugatuck, because we’re all very happy with him.”