That £500k council grant to Leeds United explained … sort of

Leeds_United_LogoBrief flurry of possible excitement over. It got me going earlier today, and others on Twitter earlier in the week but …

It turns out that the £500,000 grant to Leeds United that appears in Leeds City Council’s capital spending plans for next year is old money.

It’s been knocking around in the council’s budgets since Feb 2012, but always scheduled to be paid in 2014/15.

What was it for?

Can’t say for definite – the budget documents are a bit tough to work out if you’re not an insider.

But it’s probably this:

Back in the day Uncle Ken had PLANS.

In June 2011 (seven months before the grant first reared its head in the 2012/13 budget) the council’s leaders agreed to inject £500k into the council’s capital programme to help Leeds United pay for the cost of a realignment of Lowfields Road that would create space for the club’s proposed extension of Elland Rd’s East Stand.

And in every budget that has appeared since then, including the one that gets voted on this month, there has been a line saying, without further explanation: “Elland Road Grant to Lufc … Estimated costs 2014/15 £500,000”.

It probably got injected, but never outjected.

Without being a mind-reader or a council budget-writer, though, it’s impossible to say if they’re one and the same.

I’m sure Massimo will sort it.

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