Secretary Tim O’Keeffe: competitiveness concerns.

Secretary Tim O’Keeffe: competitiveness concerns.

Waterford GAA officials have clarified the so-called ‘ticket tax’ to be levied on clubs in a bid to fill the hole in the County Board’s coffers.

At last week’s board meeting in Dungarvan delegates voted 20:18 in favour of asking Croke Park to sanction a €5 levy on ticket prices for all further senior hurling championship matches involving Waterford this year.

This was after Treasurer Michael Hogan gave an update on the County Board’s financial affairs. The Old Parish clubman said preparing county teams cost €733,000 in 2009 – and around €100,000 more has been shelled out on the various Waterford panels than at this time last year.

Officials privately have complained about the paltry cut the county gets from the Munster Council’s gate receipts, with chairman Tom Cunningham indicating Waterford’s share from the July 11 decider with Cork will amount to a mere €2,000–€3,000.

This has been held up as the reason Waterford attempted to cut a deal with the Cork and Tipperary county boards, offering them home advantage in the final in return for €50,000. The move was aborted amid an outcry about playing Cork at Páirc Ui Chaoimh, and a demand from the Munster Council for Waterford to ‘come clean’ after initial denials that any such agreement had been mooted.

Delegates warned that a public backlash would ensue about sticking a fiver on match tickets – prompting a compromise: a draw which would see all clubs in the county receive in the region of 50 tickets to sell at €5 each. As well as a first prize of c.€2,000, there’s a novelty second prize of two seats on the team bus to Thurles on Sunday fortnight. Other prizes include All-Ireland hurling and football final tickets plus overnight accommodation in Dublin.

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