[Sinn Fein]

10 January 2001

Taxing referees - Revenue Commissioners `over the top' says Dublin City Councillor and sports coach

A Dublin City Councillor and voluntary sports coach, Sinn Fein Councillor Nicky Kehoe, has accused the Revenue Commissioners of ``going over the top'' in plans to penalise referees by taxing their weekend match payments.

Cllr Kehoe, who is a senior Gaelic football and hurling manager and juvenile coach with a GAA club in Cabra, said this will affect all sports, not just Gaelic and soccer.  He said it may prompt many referees ``to give up the game''.

The Sinn Fein councillor has called on the Government to reconsider the Revenue Commissioners' move and its implications for people encouraging sport and activity at grassroots community level.  Cllr Kehoe said:

``This move is over the top.

``Despite what players say about referees on the pitch, we couldn't survive without them.

``It's an often thankless job and the money referees get wouldn't get them an Ansbacher account.

``I'm afraid that this move will mean even fewer people giving up their spare time to encourage sport and fitness across a whole range of sports and ages.''

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