New GOP Bill Slashes Tax Break for NFL, Would Save Taxpayers $200 Million Over Next Decade

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Now that the NFL protests have ruined football, I’m sure most taxpayers won’t mind saving a few bucks when it comes to the NFL and other stadiums. The GOP tax plans reveals that it will save Americans at least $200 million in taxes by slashing tax-exempt bonds that fund the stadiums for these overpaid NFL morons and others. Now tell me, who’s really going to be upset about this?

The GOP tax plan unveiled Thursday by Republican members of the House reportedly contains a provision that would prevent professional sports teams, including the NFL, from taking advantage of tax-exempt municipal bonds, a government service usually reserved for local communities.

“Generally used for roads, hospitals and the like, a number of communities have extended them to help out sports teams, usually as a way of enticing a team to stay in a community,” The Washington Times reported. “Axing the break would save $200 million over the next decade, according to early estimates.”

As reported by Reuters, “(o)f the 16 NFL stadiums built or renovated from 2000 through 2014, 13 were financed in part by tax-exempt bonds with an average financing worth $360.2 million.” The total costs of these bonds was an estimated $3.7 billion.

The provision included in the GOP’s tax bill would affect all sports teams, including those in the MLB and the NHL. Similar resolutions could wind up being added to the tax bill as well later down the road.

Speaking in late October on “Fox and Friends,” Rep. Matt Gaetz shared his plan to add a provision to the tax reform bill that would eliminate tax loopholes for any NFL teams that protest the national anthem, according to Newsmax.

“I don’t think that the millionaires and billionaires associated with professional sports ought to get a special tax break that’s not available to the regular small businesses and regular folks in my district and across America,” the Florida Republican said.

“If there are players with concerns about racial inequality or the criminal justice system, rather than taking a knee, how about they take a stand and actually advocate for some proposals that they think might improve quality of life for people?” he added.

In a statement published in September, Gaetz added further details about the benefits enjoyed by the NFL.

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“The NFL League Office has received a special tax carveout since 1966, when the tax code first listed ‘professional football leagues’ as trade organizations,” the statement read. “Though individual teams are not tax-exempt, the NFL League Office is.”

His remarks seem to go along with the sentiment of President Donald Trump, who has lashed out at the NFL over its ongoing national anthem protests by highlighting the “massive tax breaks” it receives.

Why is the NFL getting massive tax breaks while at the same time disrespecting our Anthem, Flag and Country? Change tax law!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 10, 2017

“Since 2015, the NFL hasn’t benefitted (sic) from a not-for-profit tax break enjoyed by many professional sports league offices,” PolitiFact concluded.

“However, it does enjoy tax exemptions on municipal bonds used to build stadiums. Other sports leagues also benefit from this tax code loophole, sometimes to a greater extent.”

In addition as reported by the WSJ:

Sports Stadiums Would Lose Access to Tax-Exempt Bonds Under House Tax Plan

Sports stadiums could no longer take advantage of tax breaks created to help states and cities borrow under the tax proposal released Thursday by congressional Republicans.

Lawmakers of both parties have long sought to limit the use of municipal bonds to benefit sports teams. A 2016 report by the Brookings Institution found the federal government has lost about $3.2 billion in federal tax dollars on construction or renovation of professional sports stadiums since 2000, including a $431 million subsidy for Yankee stadium.

The losses occur when stadium projects are allowed to take advantage of a tax exemption created to help municipalities borrow at lower rates. Bondholders are willing to lend money more cheaply because they are not required to pay taxes on the interest they earn.

About $8.5 billion in stadium bonds are currently outstanding, according to an analysis of Bloomberg data by Municipal Market Analytics, with much of the borrowing in New York, Texas and Florida. The prohibition would apply only to future borrowing.

Local governments usually justify granting tax-exempt borrowing privileges to stadiums on the basis that they will stimulate economic development. But federal officials, good-government groups, and municipal market analysts question whether those projects would go forward even without the incentives.

“If you’re looking at something like a football stadium, the owners are usually billionaires and their franchises are so valuable that there’s a question about whether or not they should be receiving tax-exempt status,” said Howard Cure, director of municipal bond credit research at Evercore Wealth Management.

Well taxpayers, it looks like we WILL have a few more dollars for our new bridges and roads in our communities soon.  Make sure you thank an NFL player for that! Nice work for taxpayers and it will certainly benefit a lot more people, who will actually appreciate the improvements from their taxes.

 

 

 

 

 

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