The Waterford County Board has recorded a surplus of €284,421 in their 2021 accounts.
After posting a deficit of €216,997 in 2020, secretary Pat Flynn welcomed the financial turnaround in his annual report.
“The Board’s finances, like all units in the Association, have been severely affected by the pandemic but it is encouraging to see a surplus at the end of the year compared to last year’s large deficit. We must acknowledge the support again this year from the Munster Council and Croke Park.”
John Jackson has stepped down as county treasurer. The Ballyduff Upper man held the role for six years and previously served as Waterford PRO. Flynn thanked John Jackson, who has stepped down as county treasurer, in his report.
Gate receipts, sponsorship, and fundraising all moved in the right direction for the Déise. Income totalled €1,218,133 while expenditure came in at €933,712.
Club championship games yielded €147,385, an increase of €76,000 on the 2020 figures. Income from the Waterford SHC rose by €101,000. The board took in €330,363 in sponsorship, €115,000 more than the previous year. Fundraising activities grew from €51,640 to €167,564. Supporters group Club Déise contributed €97,939.
“In truth, the board would have been unable to fund several of the training events or equipment if it wasn’t for Club Déise’s assistance,” Flynn acknowledged. They also received €52,000 in corporate donations generated by the new commercial committee.
The cost of county teams fell by €87,000 from €705,365 to €618,362. The Waterford senior footballers set them back €100,000, a drop of €114,000 on the previous year. The spend on the senior hurlers increased from €398,483 to €444,191. A mileage grant of €61,698 and a nutrition grant of €16,000 also reduced costs.
The Déise also received Government funding of €87,910 for the 2020 All Ireland championships. Waterford City and County Council gave a grant of €15,000 for reaching the 2020 All Ireland hurling final.
The Board aims to press ahead with phase 1 of the Walsh Park project in early 2022. “The redevelopment of Walsh Park remains a high priority in the county. The funding and construction inflation are creating difficulties but the tremendous work by the Walsh Park Development Committee is ensuring the project is progressing.”
Flynn also highlighted the difficulty of finding new referees. “My sincere appreciation to all the referees, linesmen, and umpires who officiated several times not only at the weekend but also at times on the one day. Due to the increased level of abuse and questioning of referees, it is getting more difficult not only to recruit new referees but to hold on to the loyal band of referees we have at present. I would appeal once again to clubs to assist in the recruiting of referees and most importantly to support all referees but young and new referees in particular.”
The All-Ireland football structure isn’t fit for purpose in his view. “What is obvious is that the current system cannot remain for much longer and a structure that has equality and competitiveness for all participants must be found.”
The Waterford minor footballers lost to Cork by 5-28 to 0-3 in July and Flynn felt that this game was of no value to the Déise players. “The least they deserve is to play in a competition at a level where they can compete and develop as footballers.”
646 club games from minor to adult grade were scheduled in Waterford up until November 23. Flynn reported 55 walkovers (29 in football and 26 in hurling).
- Much more in next Tuesday’s Waterford News & Star.