Liverpool Council will lose over £300,000 in fees spent on due diligence on Everton’s new stadium project.
It has been confirmed that Everton will pay £502,000 of the £841,000 incurred by Liverpool Council after it was agreed last month that negotiations between the two sides would end. In a joint statement from the local authority and the club, it was said that an ‘amicable settlement’ had been reached over the Bramley Moore project.
Both parties said it was ‘reasonable and proportionate’ for the Premier League club to pay more than £500,000 given that the work carried out was ‘solely for the benefit of Everton’. Part of the costs incurred related to Liverpool Council exploring the use of any future stadiums in their bid for the 2022 Commonwealth Games which Everton would not be responsible for.
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The agreed settlement has no new impact on council finances as an amount had been set aside during the 2022/23 budget process. The local authority has given chief executive Tony Reeves the power to end the ‘pending dispute’ between the two sides after hundreds of thousands of pounds were spent on fees between 2016 and 2019 because it agreed to help fund Everton’s new Bramley Moore. Dock stadium project.
Everton then sought other sources of funding and did not seek funding from the board. Local Government Commissioners appointed to oversee Liverpool Council have pointed to the ‘failure of governance’ around the scheme.
Commissioners have also ordered an investigation into how the council incurred “significant expenditure” between April 2016 and March 2019. It is said that during this period Liverpool council failed to manage costs, “including some are now unrecoverable”.
At last month’s cabinet meeting, Deputy Mayor Jane Corbett said the deal “resolves one of the many outstanding financial issues within council and helps resolve outstanding projects in conjunction with the commissioners. of local government”. The deal was criticized by opposition Liberal Democrat adviser Kris Brown.
Cllr Brown, chairman of the board’s audit committee, said: “While it’s good to see the board salvage something from this sad saga with Everton, we have effectively thrown £339,000 down the drain.
“For a cash-strapped council and taxpayers facing a whopping £16m bill caused by the energy contract debacle, losing over £300,000 in this Everton loan deal is just another kick in the teeth. The legacy of Joe Anderson continues to plague our city, embroiled in further financial harm under the beleaguered leadership of Mayor Joanne Anderson.
“Liverpool deserve better.”