Olympic Council of Ireland gets €1.7m from State in four years

Minister of State Patrick O’Donovan confirms he is considering review of funding

Pat Hickey, president of the Olympic Council of Ireland, which  has received €1.7 million in State funding over the past four years. File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Pat Hickey, president of the Olympic Council of Ireland, which has received €1.7 million in State funding over the past four years. File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

 

The Olympic Council of Ireland has received €1.7 million in State funding over the past four years.

Figures released by the Department of Transport to The Irish Times show the body received €520,000 in 2015 alone.

According to the latest published accounts, this accounted for almost a third of the organisation’s revenue for 2015.

The annual audited accounts for the OCI show that it received over €425,000 in funding from Sport Ireland, the State’s administrative body for the area, that year- €122,147 for programmes and activities and €303,178 for general administrative expenses.

This is out of a total income stream of €1,379,000 for the year, and State grants proved the second most valuable source of revenue for the OCI after marketing and sponsorship.

The programmes and activities funding is largely earmarked for tournament expenditure and grants to affiliated sports, of which there were eight amounting to €92,000 in 2015.

Minister of State at the Department of Transport Patrick O’Donovan has confirmed he is considering reviewing the funding made available to the OCI.

Administrative expenses

The vast bulk of State money received by the OCI goes towards day-to-day administrative expenses such as paying salaries, rent and insurance.

Documents obtained from the Companies Registration Office show that the OCI also received €229,000 for special sponsorship of Team Ireland clothing for the Rio Olympics, along with over €170,000 in solidarity payments from the International Olympic Committee.

The OCI was in a healthy position overall for 2015 with retained earnings of almost €1 million, which included an operating surplus of nearly €275,000 and did not take into account assets such as buildings and fixtures belonging to the organisation.

The OCI received an increased high performance grant of €520,000 from Sport Ireland for the Olympic year of 2016. This was part of a State funding package for the Rio Olympics worth some €1,720,000 between 2013 and 2016.