A LAME excuse is what Wests Entertainment Group president James Treloar called the council's hesitation to financially support the NRL Wests Tigers clash.
Taking to the stand during last Tuesday night's community consultation, Mr Treloar apologised to the councillors for his "failure to keep the elected body of Tamworth informed as to exactly what Wests Entertainment do."
"That was apparent from the statements made by many members of the public and council at the last meeting," he said.
A council vote tied on whether to sponsor the NRL Wests Tigers and Canberra Raiders clash for $20,000.
Acting mayor at the time Phil Betts cast the deciding vote in favour of the sponsorship.
But, there was plenty of uncertainty from other councillors who felt the money would be better spent on the city's infrastructure backlog.
Mr Treloar pointed out that Scully Park, where the NRL game was to be played before the season was cancelled last week, is an international-standard field.
"Councillors can I remind you that Wests built, at $5.3 million and maintains Scully Park," he said.
"That is $5.3 million you have in your budget now that you didn't have to spend providing a major football facility or sporting stadium.
"That's $5.3 million you could go and spend repairing Fisher's Bridge, replacing dirt roads or even doing curb and guttering."
Councillors Mark Rodda, Juanita Wilson and Jim Maxwell voted against the sponsorship at the meeting.
Some felt it was difficult to support cash sponsorship while communities still face infrastructure backlogs.
Others argued the risk to Wests to host the game had dulled with the NRL clash a 'must-see' for both tourists and local fanatics.
The sponsorship support was all part of the council's strategy to come under a national spotlight, with the lead up to the event earning it more than $1 million in advertising.
Tamworth Regional Council has not paid the $20,000 sponsorship it had planned to contribute.