After hinting about the reconstruction of subvention policies for athletes back in May, Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture Michael Pintard, during his contribution to the 2018-19 Budget Communication, elaborated on the changes he plans to make in the coming months.
Pintard said that while the government will try to make the policy as inclusive as possible, it would be impossible to support every athlete that is considered “elite” by his or her respective federations.
The current endowment for the athlete subvention policy is set at $1.4 million.
“We have completed a revised draft of our subvention programme,” Pintard said.
“This document will now be delivered to Cabinet and then published pending Cabinet approval. To date, we have a little over $1.4 million dedicated to athletes that are on subvention. We do intend to ask Cabinet to transition this committee outside of the ministry so that it is quasi-government, enabling it to raise capital to increase the amount of fund needed to subvent Bahamian athletes, since we are exploding on the international scene in multiple sports.
“Our assistance to various organisations in this country, goes beyond the subvention that we give them on a regular basis, which exceeds $420,000 per annum. We are also engaged in funding multiple trips for the majority of the federations that are presently travelling internationally.
“This is unsustainable the rate that it is going and that is why we have asked federations to provide a calendar at the beginning of the year so we can plan with them to approach corporate citizens locally and internationally.
“We are working in tandem to make sure that we work out a consistent formula on how to fund these national championships and how to engage these federations, so they take greater responsibility for the events we host annually.”