Belfast Telegraph

New sports laws have hidden cost

The Jim Gracey column

Cash-strapped Northern Ireland sport has been sleepwalking into a minefield with serious financial implications all round, but for football in particular.

Aspects of proposed new laws designed to tackle bad behaviour in and around sports grounds could also penalise the law-abiding and hit clubs and associations heavily in the pocket.

They also create a situation where some actions are termed criminal offences in one sport but not in others.

Most worrying for sport from a financial point of view is that the money-spinning corporate hospitality growth industry threatens to be the most seriously affected.

Measures that moved closer to becoming law in midweek include restrictions on the sale of alcohol, in areas where games can be viewed, TWO hours before kick off and an hour after the final whistle.

For the full story, see this week's Sunday Life.

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