COTA's eligibility for state funds questioned

Circuit of the Americas

20 August 2012 by Ryan Wood

Organisers of the United States Grand Prix, to be held at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, are certain they followed the correct process in order to take advantage of state funding.

The organisers are counting on upwards of $30 million (£19m) from the Major Events Trust Fund - a state fund to set-up to help finance major international and national sporting events in the area.

However, Gregg Abbott, a ruling Texas Attorney, believes the race isn't eligible for such funds because no formal application for the money, nor a selection process as to where the event should be held, were put before the state.

"Unless an application for an event as defined in the statute is submitted to a site selection organisation, that event is ineligible for METF funding," he said in a statement.

CotA president Steve Sexton is working with the officials to ensure the funding, which is supposed to be released to the organisers after the race once the economic impact on the area has been established, will flow through without issue.

"We have worked with the local organizing committee in following the process to secure and host this international event," he said.

"This event will pump hundreds of millions of dollars into the Texas economy while creating thousands of new full and part-time jobs and will have a positive impact on our community.

"We look forward to the first Formula 1 United States Grand Prix in Austin this November, and to working with state, county and city officials to create another key economic driver for Central Texas."