CLUBS across the county who don’t deliver for the county board in the 2013 fundraising draw face the prospect of being fined for their failure at the end of the year.
This stark scenario was painted by Clare County Board chairman, Michael McDonagh, in a special debate on the board’s financial well-being that dominated the February monthly meeting of Clare GAA in the West County Hotel last Thursday night.
“We will have to look at sanctioning clubs that don’t bother,” said Mr McDonagh in appealing to clubs to support what is Clare GAA’s flagship fundraising project and which netted the board over €80,000 in 2012.
“Good senior clubs should be doing well over 100 tickets in the draw and there are clubs close to myself who aren’t doing that. If clubs don’t do it we will have to look at putting levies on clubs,” he added.
The chairman’s comments came at the end of two-pronged presentation on Clare GAA’s finances and projections for 2013 that was delivered by board treasurer Bernard Keane and chairman of the board’s audit committee, accountant Michael Curtin.
“Each year we spend a massive amount of money and we have to try and balance the books,” said Mr McDonagh. “This year we have had three or four meetings already in relation to putting things in place for the coming year.
“We are one of the counties that can say we are handling our own affairs. There is one thing I would say is that clubs have to become more proactive in relation to the county draw, which is the only thing we ask clubs to do.
“Some are absolutely top class and sell 300 tickets, but more come in without 30 or some with less. We are going to have to look at that,” he added.
Continuing, the chairman said that the need for clubs to rally behind the fundraising efforts of the board was paramount to help pay for the provision of better infrastructure for the preparation of county teams.
“It’s the most embarrassing thing that we are going outside of the county so that we can train our county teams. That’s something that has to stop,” he said.
“We are in a situation that we can barely get a pitch for our senior footballers to train on, because of weather. We have been very lucky with Mungret, Corofin and LIT. Other than that we’d be in serious trouble. We need our infrastructure, but we need the clubs of the county to step forward,” he added.

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Joe Ó Muircheartaigh graduated from University College Dublin in 1989 with a degree in history and politics. After completing a Diploma in Journalism at The College of Commerce, Rathmines in 1991, he embarked on a career in journalism. Joe spent four years with Clare FM from 1992 and was with The Clare Champion from 1996 to 2005. He has won two McNamee Awards for GAA journalism and has published two books. Contact Joe on [email protected]

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