By Ken Reed
For the last 32 years, New York City’s famed Madison Square Garden (MSG), a for-profit business, has not paid a cent in property tax to New York City. MSG was granted a tax exemption in 1982. There is no expiration date.
For the tax year beginning in July, the Garden will save approximately $54 million in property taxes, according to George Sweeting, the deputy director of the city’s Independent Budget Office. Since 1982, the Garden has saved $350 million in property taxes due to the exemption.
“Truly, this is one of the wonders of the world: a chunk of corporate welfare unlimited in size and infinite in time,” wrote Jim Dwyer in the New York Times recently.
Former New York City mayor Edward Koch said in 2002 that he thought the tax exemption was only for 10 years. However, the language of the law actually reads that as long as the New York Knicks and New York Rangers play their home games at the Garden for 10 years the tax exemption would continue. And continue it has.
However, a State Assembly committee will consider a bill in the coming weeks to end the exemption, said David Weprin, a Queens assemblyman who has long opposed the tax exemption for the Garden.
Let’s hope Weprin’s work pays off and the state law giving the Garden this sweetheart tax break is wiped from the books.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #17 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports With Legendary New York Times Sports Columnist Robert Lipsyte – We chat about Lipsyte’s amazing career and some of the athletes he covered and got to know well, like Muhammad Ali, as well as his relationships with fellow sports journalists like Bob Costas and Howard Cosell.
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Episode #16 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Andrew Maraniss: Outstanding Author of Books That Focus On the Intersection of Sports, History and Social Justice.
Episode #15 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports Psychology with Dr. Tim Rice. We discuss the growth of sports psychology at all levels, the positive impact that a number of high profile athletes have had by opening up, and the importance of everyone involved in sports caring for the whole athlete, mind and body.
Episode #14 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Making Sense of the Injury Pandemic in Major League Baseball – Gary McCoy is a strength, conditioning and high performance coach who has worked with several Major League Baseball organizations.
Episode #13 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: A Conversation With Long-Time MLB Exec Dan Evans About What’s Right With Baseball and What Could Be Better – Evans is a former general manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers and is currently a consultant for Go the Distance Baseball, which owns the Field of Dreams movie site.
Episode #12 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: A Fun Chat With Dan Gutman, Author of the Baseball Card Adventure Series for Kids
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
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