Supporters' board is set to quiz club on redundancies
THE FIRST meeting between the newly-elected Plymouth Argyle Supporters' Board and the club's directors was set to take place today.
One of the topics sure to be raised by members of the PASB is the possibility of up to 10 redundancies being made among non-playing employees at Home Park as part of a 'restructuring'.
Staff were told about this prospect earlier this week, only a few days after the first anniversary of Argyle owner and chairman James Brent completing his buy-out of the club.
The Pilgrims had been in administration for seven months before Brent rescued them.
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During that period, many members of staff were made redundant while those who remained had to work without pay.
That led to the setting up of the fund-raising fans' group The Green Taverners, who assisted the club's employees by raising money for them with a series of events.
Elections to the PASB were recently carried out, not without some controversy, and the intention is for members to meet the club's directors on a regular basis.
The role of the PASB is to pose a 'constructive challenge' to the directors, as well as having an oversight of the running of the club and their finances.
The Argyle Fans' Trust are strongly represented on the PASB and will be seeking further information about the possibility of redundancies at Home Park when they meet the directors today.
They have expressed their 'support and sympathy' for the staff in a statement.
It is understood the redundancies are not being considering because of any financial problems at the club but as part of a restructuring process which was planned when Brent took over.
In their statement, the Trust said they were 'deeply concerned' by the possibility of job losses at Argyle.
The statement continued: "The Trust would like to express its support and sympathy for the staff, many of whom worked for long periods with either reduced or no pay during the club's administration in 2011.
"The Trust will be seeking further information from the club when the first Plymouth Argyle Supporters Board meeting is held with the club board.
"The Trust has three supporter group representatives on the PASB, as well as a number of individuals who are Trust members.
"Whilst recognising that Argyle is a business entity and must pay its way to survive, we should not forget that many supporters have shown their support for the staff by giving very generously.
"Large sums have been raised through the magnificent efforts of groups like The Green Taverners to help the club pay those staff who worked on during the dark days of administration.
"The Trust will not make any further comment until it has spoken to the club at the PASB meeting."
Argyle manager Carl Fletcher insisted he and his players were fully focused on getting results and they would not be distracted by issues off the pitch.
He said: "The financial side is not our department. We are there to play football and that's what we concentrate on.
"Obviously, it's disappointing there might be an outcome of people losing their jobs. No-one likes to see that.
"But in these financial times in the world at the minute, I think there are lots and lots of companies who are maybe not where they would like to be."