First, a visit to its 2009 Federal 990 form, a document filed by non-profits and available to the public. You can get your copy here. A few highlights from that document:
· The NURFC (page 9, Part VIII, line 2(a)) had revenue from admissions of only $525,690. At the $12 adult admission price, that’s a mere 43,807 paying attendees for an entire year. That’s 120 persons per day. That’s less than the daily attendance at the basement-dwelling Cincinnati Bengals and fewer persons than the Reds attract to two average homes games.
· The NURFC saw contributions in 2009 drop by more than half, from $6.1 million in 2008 to $2.3 million in 2009 (page 1, line 8).
· The NURFC’s investment income dropped in from $1.2 million in 2008 to a loss of $4.3 million in 2009 (page 1, line 10).
· The NURFC sustained a loss of $12.3 million in 2009 (page 1, line 19).
· Of its contributions and grants, more than half ($1.182 million came from government grants).
· The NURFC sustained a net loss on the sale of securities of $4.8 million last year (page 9, Part VIII, line 7(d)).
· Its cash from the beginning of the year to the end of the year deterioriated from $2.8 million to $700,000 (Page 11, Part X, line 1).
· The NURFC spent $348,953 on lobbying expenses in 2009 (page 3, Part II-B, line 1(f)).
· NURFC Executive Director Donald Murphy is taking home a cool $259,419 in salary and benefits for running the place so nicely.
To date, the total infusion of government cash into the NURFC exceeds $65,000,000. If you amortize that investment out over 30 years, the useable life of the building, the subsidy per year is $2.167 million per year. Divided by the estimated 43,800 annual paying attendees, equals a government subsidy of $49.47 for every single man, woman and child that enters the facility.
In late December, astonishingly, Cincinnati City Council voted to give the NURFC another $300,000 from the coffers of a flat-broke City.
And then Friday, the Enquirer reported that, once again, the cash-hemmoraging NURFC is pinning longevity homes on the National Park Service adopting the institution as a federal institution, thus forever freeing the losing proposition from market forces and any semblance of common sense in its operations.