Message from the Chairman

Dear Members,

2014 has been a significant year for the club both on and off the field.

The club has made positive progress in nearly all areas of its footballing and Leagues Club business. This is because everyone in the club is working together towards a common goal of transforming the Eels into the most professional sporting organisation in Australia. 

Therefore it’s disappointing that on the cusp of an exciting new season I again have to update Members on the club’s ongoing difficulties with the Parramatta District Rugby League Club (PDRL) board.

The Parramatta Leagues Club (PLC), as the main financial contributor to PDRL, has made multiple requests to the PDRL Board to resolve governance and financial concerns over the past 12 months. The PLC CEO has outlined a full explanation of those issues today and I encourage you to read his update here.

These concerns have been heightened by the correspondence from the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority (ILGA). Three current Directors of the PDRL, who were previously on the PLC Board, have been asked to explain why disciplinary action should not be taken against them by ILGA on the basis of this complaint.

These issues plus the recent postponement of the 2014 PDRL AGM and Board Election has left the Eels Board and management with no choice but to take action to protect the interests of the club and its Members.     

As a result, the Parramatta Leagues Club and Parramatta National Rugby League have decided to withhold direct funding to the PDRL until all our concerns have been addressed.

Rest assured that funding of junior football, staff, and community related services currently administered by the PDRL will continue under alternative arrangements that have already been identified.

The Board has not taken this decision lightly. The Parramatta Eels are in one of the most competitive sporting markets in the world. As an organisation, we simply cannot allow individuals to damage our brand and create instability. 

Only strong and definitive action can finally resolve this ongoing and unwelcome distraction, which impedes the efforts of everyone else in the club who works tirelessly to make the Eels great again.

The Members and supporters of the Eels deserve better and I am determined to push the Club forward into a new era of stability and good governance.

Steve Sharp,

Chairman