Last Updated on February 3, 2015
The new budget President Obama sent to Congress this week calls for an end to tax deductions for donations made to college athletic departments for season tickets or preferential seating, also known as seat-related contributions. Currently, 80 percent of these donations are tax deductible.
The administration claims people would pay an additional $2.5 billion in taxes over the next decade with this change.
No doubt, college athletics administrators will watch this development closely. Donations are the highest source of revenue in virtually every athletic department. Yes, even higher than those television contracts you hear so much about.
Here is a random sampling of schools throughout FBS to give you an idea of the revenue they generate from donations compared to their total distribution from their conference (television contract, championships, etc.) and the NCAA (March Madness):
|School||Donations||NCAA + Conference Distribution|
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February 5, 2015 at 3:53 pm
If there was ever a deduction that demands revision of the entire U.S. tax code, this is it.
Ball by Ball Score
February 8, 2015 at 2:38 am
An end to tax deductions for donations made to college athletic departments for season tickets or preferential seating,It is a bad news !
February 11, 2015 at 11:50 am
A couple of thoughts about this post. First, it is not surprising that donations are the greater source of revenue for University AD since donation money is not shared while media money is shared with other schools (although not evenly). Rest assured no AD wants to see either of those streams reduced. I share your skepticism about a decrease in donations if the deduction goes away. No doubt that smart University AD will rework the giving to ensure donors can contribute to the “enrichment of student-athletes” in other ways and move quickly to other ways to ensure preferential seating for these generous donors.
I also applaud the President Obama call for an end to tax-exempt bonds to build sports facilities for professional sports teams. Let’s hope other politicians have the political will power to join him.
April 5, 2015 at 9:59 am
How does this tax exempt status change affect private universities?
August 21, 2015 at 11:43 am
There should never be a charitable tax deduction for athletics when millions of students are struggling with school loan debt to receive academic educations for the job world. All sports programs should be totally self supporting or closed down. Coaches and AD directors are paid millions which is more than the average heart doctor ever receives. Would you rather have a worthless coach preform your heart surgery, or a highly trained heart surgery? America needs to get it priorities straight!