Security costs ate up rodeo revenues
The Olympic rodeo took in about $66,000 less than its expenses due to high security costs
Monday, February 18, 2002
The Associated Press
Farmington – Security expenditures ate up much of the revenue generated by the Olympic rodeo.
Davis County Chief sheriff's Deputy Kevin McLeod said the cost to county taxpayers to secure the three-day rodeo at the Davis FairPark Feb. 9-11 was about $66,000.
The event also cost Weber County about $24,000 for 40 officers who assisted those in Davis County.
Helping offset security costs which totaled roughly $90,000 was the $110,000 from rodeo concession, parking and ticket revenues.
Other costs, such as utilities, have not been determined.
The county heightened security after animal rights groups said that as many as 130 protesters would show up at the rodeo. On the first night, there were about 80, with the number waning each night.
On the final day of the rodeo, a federal judge issued a temporary restraining order against officers frisking the protesters, but organizers said many of the demonstrators had been intimidated by the searches.
"As a taxpayer, it infuriates me," McLeod said of the security cost.
While some might view having 150 sheriff's deputies on the grounds as overkill, McLeod said, "We did exactly what we felt was necessary."
McLeod said there also had been the potential for national and international anarchist groups to attend the protest.
County Commissioner Carol R. Page said the rodeo served as a valuable training tool for law enforcement.