Offaly County Council won't pull out of FAI contract amid controversy

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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news@offalyexpress.ie

Offaly County Council won't pull out of FAI contract amid controversy

Offaly County Council won't pull out of FAI contract amid controversy

Offaly County Council will not end a contractual arrangement with the FAI adopted in last November's budget despite ongoing financial controversy within the association.

The agreement currently in place with the FAI is for the council to part fund a coach at a cost of €26,000 over three years from 2017. The contract is due to expire in the summer of 2020. 

The coach is involved heavily in local schools and clubs with a variety of programmes deemed a major success since their inception and the beginning of the contract.

At the April meeting of Offaly County Council on Monday, April 15, Cllr John Clendennen questioned the funding within the Offaly budget given the current situation of the FAI and the stance taken by Sport Ireland. 

Former FAI Chief Executive John Delaney has been embroiled in controversy over the financial affairs of the association which saw him give the FAI a €100,000 loan.

A number of other financial irregularities have been questioned and are the subject of inquiries by a second Oireachtas committee meeting this week. 

It's understood John Delaney will now step aside voluntarily from his new role as executive vice president following a high-level meeting on Monday evening.

Cllr Clendennen asked whether Offaly County Council had received any contact from Sport Ireland in this regard. 

In response, OCC Director of Services, Frank Heslin, said, "there has been no correspondence from Sport Ireland."

He said there is currently a contract of employment in place and "we'll continue onwards with that."

He recognised the work being carried out under that contract as a major positive for the sporting landscape of Offaly, particularly among younger people.