Greyhound board denies reports of overspending at Limerick headquarters

Eugene Phelan

Reporter:

Eugene Phelan

BORD na gCon has strongly hit out at a national media report that “incorrectly stated” that there was a €5m budget overspend on the complex that houses the new Bord na gCon Headquarters and Limerick Greyhound Stadium.

BORD na gCon has strongly hit out at a national media report that “incorrectly stated” that there was a €5m budget overspend on the complex that houses the new Bord na gCon Headquarters and Limerick Greyhound Stadium.

“This was an alarming misinterpretation of the real facts. There was no overspend. The board’s executive management delivered the Greenpark project under budget and on time,” a spokesman for the board told the Limerick Leader.

Bord na gCon also stated that it has significant capacity to meet all it’s financial obligations to the satisfaction of banking partners and the state run Comptroller and Auditor General’s office which monitors the organisation’s financial operations on an annual basis. They have already committed to spending €2.6m in capital developments in 2012 to further enhance industry’s network of racing operations countrywide.

“Bord na gCon have delivered combined surplus operational profits in excess of €17.1mover the past five years, which is on a par with the previous five year period ( 2002-2006). This is a remarkable performance given the current recession and vastly suppressed consumer spending. This surplus was delivered despite reductions of €2m from the Horse & Greyhound Fund whilst supporting the industry with close to €1m additional prize money compared to the previous five year period,” he added.

The statement follows a number of stories in the Irish Examiner which accused the Greyhound Board of over- spending by €5 million in building its new headquarters in Limerick.

A spokesman for the Board also confirmed to the Limerick Leader that there was an ongoing dispute with bookmakers at the track, after they walked out last weekend, when their location was moved. “While this appears a better site there is a problem about who should get what pitch, some are better than others and that is one of the issues to be resolved,” said a source close to one of the bookies.

This Saturday night is one of the biggest of the year with final of the Roches Feeds Oaks and a €5,000 purse.

“On an ongoing basis the IGB work with local track stakeholders, to continually strive to improve various aspects of stadium performance. The usual basis for consultation is a series of internal meetings and discussions to share concerns and air grievances. In that regard, this will be an internal matter resolved with discussions with the parties involved directly,” Adrian Neilan, IGB chief executive, told the Limerick Leader.