Cash strapped Déise board seek €650,000 AIB injection

Waterford GAA chiefs are in talks to secure a €650,000 bank loan as they battle to balance the books.

The cash strapped board, which faces a deficit in the region of €700,000, are undertaking a number of money making initiatives, including a levy on its 48 clubs and a broad ticket scheme. But the primary focus is on a loan from Allied Irish Bank, repayable over 10 years, with chairman Tom Cunningham claiming the board would have to “close up shop” if their proposals are rejected.

Cunningham also disclosed around 50% of clubs have paid the levy which varies from €1,500 for junior clubs to €2,500 for senior.

The chairman said every club that has not paid the levy will be approached in the coming week. Agreement was unanimously reached on the proposal of Tony Mansfield of Abbeyside that they proceed with their negotiations with AIB for the raising of the €650,000 loan.

Details of the proposed season ticket scheme for 2013 were presented to the meeting by Michael Murphy of the Passage East club who noted other counties, including Tipperary, Limerick and Mayo were among those who have also launched similar schemes. “It needs to be a value driven scheme, and if it is then it will sell itself,” Mr Murphy explained.

“We also want to market it in a way that the season ticket will be an ideal Christmas present, hence the need to have it fully up and running by the end of next month.”

One option will be the purchase of a ticket costing €85 that guarantees admission to every divisional and county championship game, including county finals. The cost of the same ticket for senior citizens will be €50. Mr Murphy disclosed that, in agreement with Croke Park, they will also have a season ticket for €135 that along with domestic games, will also provide admission to Waterford’s Hurling League fixtures next season, together with a ticket for the first round of the 2013 Munster SHC. There would also be a five year season ticket (for two people) with the same concessions within the county as well as an option to purchase two All-Ireland hurling and football final tickets for each of the five years. The cost will be €2,500 payable, if necessary by way of €500 instalments in January of each year. Mr Murphy said they envisaged selling 1,000 of the €85 tickets, 100 senior citizen tickets and, added to the sale of the €135 tickets, would envisage them bringing in €110,000 after costs and expenses by the end of January.

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