Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Vox, Why the NFL Just Gave Up Its Nonprofit Status: To Escape Scrutiny:
For years, the NFL's tax-exempt status has been the subject of scrutiny and ridicule. To many people, the fact that a league headed by a commissioner making $44 million a year was categorized as a nonprofit was absurd.
On Tuesday, Richard Rubin at Bloomberg reports, the NFL has finally decided to shed its tax-exempt status. As a result, it will pay an estimated $10 million or so per year in taxes.
But it's important to put this number in the proper context: the league's teams pull in about $9.5 billion per year, nearly a thousand times as much. And since 2000, US taxpayers have spent an estimated $3.9 billion on stadiums for these teams.
The NFL's decision to give up its tax-exempt status isn't some noble recognition of the tax burden it's unfairly been shirking. It's a calculated move to pay a relatively small fee to avoid scrutiny and preempt possible Congressional action.