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Nov 13, 2018

Cooler Heads Prevail Over Battle of the Drums Controversy

Ian Jones

Late this evening, Minister of Culture Patrick Faber intervened in the matter, giving verbal assurance to the secretariat that the fees being charged by the National Sports Council will be waived for the Battle of the Drums.  Prior to that decision, Sports Director Ian Jones told News Five that the gate fee is how the council is able to maintain its facilities and provide financial assistance to athletes traveling outside of the country.


Ian Jones, Director, National Sports Council

“I’d gotten a request from the secretariat to use the facility for four days, the sixteenth, seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth.  I think it‘s an entire weekend of activities.  I responded to their email stating what would be the rental fee, what would be the conditions to use the facility and not to put it out there, but being that they have already put it out there, it‘s the same rental structure that we use at all of our events for non-sporting events.  The National Sports Council‘s priority for our facility is for sporting events.  We always subsidize the cost and make the facilities as cost efficient and available as possible for sporting events.  But for non-sporting events, whether it‘s an event for profit, a non-profit, a church we have certain price structures that we follow.  In such an event where there is a fee being collected at the gate, it‘s similar to what had happened in Orange Walk with Fiestarama, we charge a flat daily rate which covers our overhead expense because for such an event that is happening outside of normal working hours, I have to have staff at hand.  I have to have security, I have to have janitors, I have to have custodians and I have to have people to take care of the bathrooms.  I have to have a manager on site.  We have our utilities, electricity that we need to cover, so we calculated what is an average for us to cover our daily, our expenses for such an event for one night.  I told Mr. Avila, I think his name was, Darius Avila that we‘ll be charging a flat fee which was five hundred dollars to cover our overhead expenses for each night of these events because it‘s a four-day event.  It‘s a full day of activities based on the schedule that he sent me.  Additionally, I told him our fee structure is that we will also require ten percent of your gate proceeds.  If you don‘t make any money, we don‘t make any money and the reason why we do this is because this money is what we use to assist in our development programs to subsidize the facilities for sporting events and also to give donations to the national teams and other sporting clubs or teams that are traveling of the country.”


The Secretariat, in a release this evening, says that it is looking forward to a formal written response from the sports director for an equitable and fair fee structure for use of the Punta Gorda Sporting Complex.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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