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18 Jan 2022

€5,000 a week to keep players on the road as Leitrim urge Croke Park to continue to fund players’ travelling costs

€5,000 a week to keep players on the road as Leitrim urge Croke Park to continue to fund players’ travelling costs

Tom Prior in action for Leitrim against Mayo in the 2021 Connacht SFC Picture: Willie Donnellan

It costs Leitrim GAA €5,000 a week just to keep their inter county teams on the road as County Board Treasurer Martin McCartin is urging the GAA to continue centrally paying the travelling expenses of inter-county players.

As Leitrim GAA gear up for their 50 Miles in January challenge, the County Board reported a surplus of €317,344 for 2021, with €150,000 coming in from the 50 Miles in January and the Win a Wedding events.

A dramatic reduction in the costs of county teams administration due to much shorter campaigns thanks to Covid-19 restrictions helped the figures but Mr McCartin told the Observer that the GAA decision to meet 80% of players' travelling expenses was a huge boost to Leitrim's figures.

“Croke Park taking up 80% of the travel costs is a huge shift and a massive advantage to the western counties or indeed any county that is further away from the capital,” Mr McCartin told the Observer before adding “Most counties seem to be turning in surpluses and that ties into the mileage being taken off, the 80% of mileage is huge.”

And the Leitrim official has urged Croke Park to continue funding the travel expenses of inter-county players: “With Covid still around us, we can’t force car pooling which we used to manage quite well but that figure could effectively double in a normal season if car pooling wasn’t to be the case.

“Up until Covid, Central Council subsidised 15 cents a mile, Leitrim County Board and every other county had to come up with the balance.”

SEE FULL INTERVIEW WITH MARTIN MCCARTIN IN THIS WEEK'S LEITRIM OBSERVER

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