The NFL gave up its non-profit status years ago, but now it has been discovered just how much you the taxpayer is subsidizing them and its in the 10’s of billions of dollars!
The fact is that the NFL raked in $14 billion in revenue in 2016 but is still heavily subsidized by local, state, and federal money based on dubious claims about stimulating the economy.
Professional sports teams in a number of cities successfully lobbied for and received new or updated sports stadiums and arenas over the last several decades, particularly during the 1990’s. And guess what? You paid for them.
When you find out how much, you will blow a gasket.
The Daily Signal tells us:
The problem is rampant.
One report on Watchdog.org said that over the past two decades, the NFL has raked in about $7 billion of taxpayer money to spend on stadium renovation and building.
Another study from the Brookings Institution showed that federal taxpayers have subsidized the construction of 36 stadiums at a cost of over $3.2 billion since 2000.
Michael Sargent, an infrastructure expert at The Heritage Foundation, wrote about how sports teams use specially crafted tax breaks to get the public to finance their massive projects.
“Tax-exempt municipal bonds are typically reserved for public-use projects such as bridges, water systems, and other infrastructure,” Sargent wrote for The Daily Signal. “Yet because of a loophole in the tax code, private-use stadiums can take advantage of this tax break, and have done so prolifically.”
In fact, only a handful of NFL and other major league teams use privately-financed venues to host their games.
The reason always given is that by subsidizing, it will bring in business that will make up for the subsidy with tax-revenue. The problem comes in, obviously, when more money goes out than comes in! It would seem after sinking enormous investments into sports franchises, cities would reap serious financial benefits in return.
But this isn’t the case at all.
Research from George Mason University has shown that not only do communities gain almost no economic benefits from subsidized sports teams, but some findings “indicate harmful effects of sports on per capita income, wage and salary disbursements, and wages per job.”
The presence of a professional sports team may affect the economy, but often in the opposite way from what proponents anticipate: sports teams may actually hurt economic growth. Despite the many millions of dollars spent on professional sports, little or none of that money makes its way back to the taxpayers who subsidize professional sports teams by building new stadiums that cost hundreds of millions of dollars.
So now, with players, and even coaches and owners disrespecting this nation, why should they get any subsidies?
Recently released polls show national anthem protests are deeply unpopular with the American people, but polls also show that the taxpayer funding of sports is also widely disliked.
There are some in Congress who have taken notice.
“In America, if you want to play sports, you’re free to do so. If you want to protest, you’re free to do so,” Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., said, according to The Washington Post. “But you should do so on your own time and on your own dime.”
Recent bipartisan legislation on Capitol Hill aimed to strip federal funding from sports teams. A bill sponsored by Sens. James Lankford, R-Okla., and Cory Booker, D-N.J., would prevent teams from using municipal bonds that are exempt from federal taxes.
Rep. Steve Russell, R-Okla., introduced a similar bill in the House.
Lankford said in a statement in June:
The federal government is responsible for a lot of important functions, but financing sports stadiums for multimillion—sometimes billion—dollar franchises is definitely not one of them. Using billions of federal taxpayer dollars for the subsidization of private stadiums when we have real infrastructure needs in our country is not a good way to prioritize a limited amount of funds.
This movement has picked up steam in recent weeks, according to Kerry Picket of The Daily Caller.
So it looks like losing advertisers, revenue, ratings and fans is not all the NFL has to worry about. Defund the NFL!
There is a major Veterans’ weekend NFL Football Boycott Planned. Click here for details.
We will be not be watching or listening to NFL games on November 12th in solidarity with veterans around the country, as football players have continued to disrespect the national anthem, the American flag, and everything our nation stands for.
What do you think of this CEO pulling ads and sponsorship from the NFL?
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