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Tax exemption for pro sports leagues targeted in new federal legislation

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Federal lawmakers are again pushing to remove the tax exemption used by many professional sports leagues and associations.

Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst’s bill would bar any pro league that makes more than $10 million annually from being 501(c)6 tax exempt. She estimates that it would save $100 million over 10 years. The NFL, for whom the tax exemption was crafted in the 1940s, gave up its exempt status in 2015. Major League Baseball dropped it in 2007. Many organizations such as the PGA Tour and the National Hockey League are still nonprofits.

“Professional sports leagues – which are raking in millions of dollars from television rights and membership dues – shouldn’t also be scoring a hole-in-one with their taxes,” Ernst said in a release.

That amount of additional revenue may not balance the budget but supporters say the principle of tax cuts for connected businesses sets a poor precedent.

“$100 million over the course of 10 years in the grand scheme of things is not a lot of money, but the precedent is that we need to start getting rid of things like this, otherwise the debt isn’t going to go down,” said Alec Fornwalt, policy analyst with the Tax Foundation. “If we keep cutting taxes and we leave things like this carved out, the debt won’t go down.”

Many organizations that used the exemption didn’t save much money. The NFL actually posted a loss in a number of years and didn’t qualify for any breaks, but others did.

“The PGA now saves millions of dollars in taxes,” Fornwalt said. “It really has to do with how these organizations have moved themselves around this status.”

Similar legislation has been proposed in the past but has never gotten much traction.

Fornwalt said it was due to the lobbying efforts, and a couple well-timed pro golfer appearances, that it was removed from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that passed in December.

This would not stop organizations from convincing local governments to pay for their stadiums, something Illinoisans are all too familiar with.

Ernst’s bill was referred to the U.S. Senate Finance Committee for consideration.

Article by Cole Lauterbach with Illinois News Network. For more INN News visit ILnews.org 

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Illinois News Network, publisher of ILNews.org, is a nonpartisan, nonprofit media company dedicated to the principles of transparency, accountability, and fiscal responsibility in the state of Illinois. INN is Illinois’ pioneering non-profit news brand, offering content from the statehouse and beyond to Illinoisans through their local media of choice and from their digital hub at ILNews.org. Springfield Daily was granted republishing permission by INN.

College

Cincinnati Prevails over IC Esports in Clash of Unbeatens

Thomas Clatterbuck

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Week 3 of Collegiate League of Legends was played against the University of Cincinnati on Friday night, with both teams coming into the week with a record of 2-0.

Game 1 was a very slow-paced game in the early game, with Illinois College playing towards the top side of the map and Cincinnati playing towards their bot side of the map. This showed by substantial farm leads in those lanes for the respective teams. The first major clash came at the 18 minute mark, where Cincinnati took a map bonus and four kills.

IC was able to stay in the game by stealing another map bonus at the 27 minute mark, but the Cincinnati long-game strategy paid off, and IC was constantly on the back foot. Game 1 ended at 37 minutes with a final score of 19-5 in favor of Cincinnati. Stat leaders for IC were Dalton “Prankuru” Swaino with a KDA of 3/3/0 and 34% of the team’s damage, followed by Adam “IC Chill” Lee with a KDA of 0/3/2 and 29% of the team’s damage.

Game 2’s early game was very similar to game 1 as IC’s top lane and Cincinnati’s bot lane both received jungle attention and this showed with substantial farm leads for both teams. There was not much action for the majority of the game, but Cincinnati was able to keep control with a strong bot lane and great macro decisions by taking dragons on spawn.

Cincinnati was able to take baron at 22 minutes and push to end shortly after. Game 2 ended at 25:30 with a final kill score of 11-4 in favor of Cincinnati. Stat leaders for IC were Dalton “Prankuru” Swaino with a KDA of 2/1/0 and 38% of the team’s damage followed by Adam “IC Chill” Lee with a KDA of 2/3/0 and 25% of the team’s damage.

This result pushes IC to 2-1 in Riot’s College League of Legends tournament.  The next match is scheduled for February 16th at 3 p.m. with the opponent to still be determined.

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College

IC Esports Improves to 2-0 with Win over Northern Illinois

Thomas Clatterbuck

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Week 2 of Collegiate League of Legends was played against Northern Illinois University, as both teams came into week to with a record of 1-0.

Game 1 was a very macro-oriented game with not much action throughout. NIU took a slight advantage near the nine minute mark, but IC stopped them from capitalizing on it. Dalton “Prakuru” Swaino helped tie up the NIU team, and prevent them from executing their game plan.

Around 28 minutes was when IC was finally able to get baron and start to take structures in NIU’s base.  Shortly after, IC was able to end the game at 31:27 with a final score of 10-3.

Game 2 was a jungle-dominated game in favor of IC and Dylan “IC Storm” Cawthon. NIU attempted long-game strategy, but IC effectively countered this with early pressure, scoring four points in the first ten minutes. This early pressure turned into a strong mid game for IC and their eventual victory 20-6 in 26:32.

Stat leaders of game 2 go to Dylan “IC Storm” Cawthon with a KDA of 11/1/2 and 32% of the team’s overall damage, followed by Dalton “Prankuru” Swaino with a KDA of 2/2/4 and dealing 28% of the team’s overall damage.

This result pushes IC to 2-0 in Riot’s College League of Legends tournament. The next match is scheduled for February 9 at 3 p.m. with the opponent to still be decided.

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College

Illinois College Starts Riot League of Legends Tournament with Commanding Performance

Thomas Clatterbuck

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JACKSONVILLE, Ill. – The Illinois College esports team started off the Riot League of Legends Tournament with an strong 2-0 victory over Heartland Community College, improving to 1-0 on the season.

Riot’s Collegiate League of Legends season is comprised of over 300 teams, with 82 coming in the North Conference. The North Conference includes 13 states (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin) and four Canadian provinces (Manitoba, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Yukon). IC ranks as the No. 9 seed in the north heading into the first match vs Heartland Community College.

Game 1 started and ended quickly for Illinois College. After pulling ahead before the 5-minute mark, their progress snowballed for the rest of the match. Heartland scored one point in the final seconds of the match, which ended 24-1 for IC.

Stat leaders on the team went to Tony “King Me” Bautista-Foti with an 8/0/5 KDA and doing 36% of the overall damage, followed by Dalton “Prankuru” Swaino with a 4/0/3 KDA and doing 21% of the overall damage.

Game 2 was very similar to game 1, which was domination from start to finish for Illinois College. Dylan “IC Storm” Cawthon took a very early victory, with other IC players quickly following suit, for a 3-0 lead by the 4-minute mark. Game 2 ended in 18:22 with a final score of 44-5 in favor of Illinois College.

Stat leaders on the team goes to Tony “King Me” Bautista-Foti with an 18/2/4 KDA and doing 31% of the overall damage, followed by Adam “IC Chill” Lee with a 10/1/9 KDA and doing 25% of the overall damage.

The next match is scheduled for February 2 at 3 p.m. with the opponent to still be determined.

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