The strain of (relative!) radicalism that has spread throughout the GAA in recent years shows no signs of abating. Before his term was up, erstwhile president Aoghan O'Feraghail commissioned a report to make recommendations and generate debate regarding the fundamentals of the Association ahead of its 150th anniversary. For that reason, it's entitled Towards 2034 - The 150th Anniversary of the GAA.
While it has yet to be published, some details have been leaked to Sean Moran of The Irish Times. (Available to read in full here).
The headline takeaway is the fact that it recommends paying inter-county players and managers an allowance, while abolishing the current expenses system. Here's the relevant excerpt:
By 2034 the GAA will have developed a model to recognise the time and effort contributed by senior inter-county players and their respective managers. This will facilitate effective budgeting where senior inter-county players and managers will retain their existing amateur status but have their value to the Association, and their enormous commitment to their sport, recognised by a defined and agreed allowance.
This will make it difficult to argue that the inter-county game remains amateur, but would formalise the current system regarding the payments of managers. Many (but not all) managers are being paid furtively, with Paraic Duffy using his valedictory Director-General's report to raise debate about such payments. Intercounty players, meanwhile, are already availing of government grants (the GPA secured €6.9 million in government grants across three years) while the GAA's most recent negotiations with the GPA led to an increase in mileage allowance.
Whether the proposed allowance would replace the grant system, or supplement it, is unclear.
The report, however, insists that there will be no such allowance at club level.
Elsewhere, the report recommends abolishing Provincial Councils and that the option of selling TV rights to subscription channels should not be disregarded.
It's well worth reading in full in The Irish Times.