Final bill for V8s $39.4m
As Auckland prepares to host its first V8 Supercars round at Pukekohe early next year, the final bill for Hamilton's five-year flirtation with the race is in.
A wash-up report by staff on the event, due in front of Hamilton City Council today, puts the total expenditure from ratepayer coffers at $39.4 million.
However, the balance of $1.25m owed by V8 Supercars Australia for major race infrastructure, which the council wants paid before it will allow it to uplift the assets to ship north, will trim council's total expenditure back to $38.1m.
The city's financial hangover remains, with $550,000 of remediation needed to return Frankton's streets to a pre-race state, work that is still unbudgeted.
In an apparent response to criticism of the decision to offload the race assets, valued at $5m but which cost millions more, staff said it was "interesting to note" that similar assets from the early end to Canberra's V8 street race were "still sitting in an empty lot" a decade after the race was last held there.
The report shows that while spectator numbers for the final event were up on the 2011 event, they remained short of the inaugural 2008, and 2009 races.
The council agreed to the exit deal in September last year after the 2011 race lost money, and V8SC said that it could not see a profit in the foreseeable future.
The deal cut the race agreement two years short, largely because of attendance, which fell dramatically from 172,000 in 2008 to 123,000 in 2009, just over 100,000 in 2010 and 2011 before the final race attracted 116,000 this year.
The report also reveals how much the controversial race raised one city residents' hackles - calling noise control at least 17 times to complain about the final race.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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