July 10th 2011
V8 400's complex questions
With the V8 400 weekend closing for another year a reader questions the numbers TCC claims for those using this expensive facility during the rest of the year.
The TCC has provided me with statistics for the use of the Reid Park Pit Complex for five months from 1st November last year.
The Council itself used the building on 17 occasions involving 1459 Council employees, and on 6 occasions for storage, for which hire fees worth $96,000 were waived (fair enough). Other than by the TCC, the Complex was used on only 19 occasions involving 92 persons, for which the hire fees payable were $258,400 but only $21,500 was actually charged.
In the Council's City Update for Oct/Nov 2010 in its “Report Card” it was claimed “total attendance at the Reid Park Pit Complex (other than the Townsville 400)” was 14,848 persons.
That is, for the 12 months 2009/2010 14,848 persons. For 5 months following just 19 non-TCC persons and 1459 TCC employees. Makes you wonder: was that 14,848 head count a deliberate fiction, or did somebody stuff up?
The statistics are so inconsistent that they need to be explained with details. Which I have been trying to get since October 2010, and the Council is failing to provide despite promises to do so.
When you bring into consideration also the costs of maintaining the Pit Building the high value of waived fees and low value of actually charged fees should raise many more questions. TCC gave me a table which presumably covers the same 5 months showing actual costs of $187,000. They include $25,000 for cleaning(!), and $21,000 for surveillance.
I'm happy to provide copies of Ray Burton's correspondence on this and related issues, and the spreadsheet tables supplied to me. My suspicion is that the TCC is desperate to give a good impression of the value to the community of the Reid Park infrastructure and is prepared to fudge its data to support that claim.
Cartoon by Alan Valentine
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