Sports | November 17, 2017 8:45 am

Senate Tax Bill Takes Away Tax-Exempt Status From NFL

If the Senate tax bill goes through, professional sports leagues will not have tax-exempt status.

If the Senate tax bill goes through, professional sports leagues like the NFL will not have tax-exempt status. Professional football leagues have been exempt from tax since 1966, reports CNBCunder section 501(c)(6) of the tax code. The Internal Revenue Service has applied the exemption to all professional sports leagues, but a proposal in the new Senate bill would eliminate the tax-exempt status for professional sports leagues.

Last month, President Donald Trump publicly criticized the NFL and its tax status and called for an end to “massive tax breaks” that the NFL received, according to CNBC. 

However, the NFL actually gave up their tax-exempt non-profit status in 2015. At that time, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said the organization had been “mischaracterized repeatedly” and the decision would “eliminate this distraction,” according to CNBC. 

Victor Matheson, professor of economics at the College of Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, said that “no sports economists are up in arms about this tax exemption that allows the NFL to form a nonprofit,” reports CNBC. He said that the bigger issue could be the proposal that recently passed in the House version of the tax bill that would cut the use of tax-exempt municipal bonds to fund building or renovating sports stadiums.