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Wings' Brian Rafalski slams Tennessee's new 'jock tax'

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Old
03-26-2010, 09:20 PM
  #1
Motown Beatdown
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Wings' Brian Rafalski slams Tennessee's new 'jock tax'

Interesting read....

http://detnews.com/article/20100326/...new--jock-tax-


Quote:
Detroit defenseman Brian Rafalski says Tennessee is unfairly taxing professional athletes to play in the state.

The Red Wings star has been running the numbers, and he estimates 17 teammates will be paying more money in taxes to face off against the Nashville Predators on Saturday night than they will earn for playing the game.

"My complaint with it is ... 17 teammates will be paying money out of their own pocket to play in Tennessee. It's a tax rate of over 100 percent," Rafalski said Friday.

From The Detroit News: http://detnews.com/article/20100326/...#ixzz0jL7Bkpb7

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Old
03-26-2010, 09:27 PM
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sonny side up
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Originally Posted by JustWingIt19 View Post
wtf? i didnt read the full article, but thats stupid... yea they are playing a game for a job, but cmon, thats wicked lame

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03-26-2010, 09:34 PM
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Rafalski could quit being a professional atlete.

That wouldn't cost him a cent in Tennessee.

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03-26-2010, 09:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonny side up View Post
wtf? i didnt read the full article, but thats stupid... yea they are playing a game for a job, but cmon, thats wicked lame

Which part is lame? The tax or complaining about a 100% tax? If you think this through to the logical conclusion, if every state did this, players wouldn't have much money left.

I'm not a tax expert but there are couple of sniff tests this doesn't appear to pass, namely that taxation is usually based on the portion earned in a given location, not to mention the lack of representation or recourse. An individual or company could choose not to operate in a state where they don't like the tax laws, but these pros seem to be completely at the mercy of the local politics to tap into someone's wallet.

What right do the states actually have to levy arbitrary taxes?

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03-26-2010, 09:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mulligan View Post
Rafalski could quit being a professional atlete.

That wouldn't cost him a cent in Tennessee.

Why does Tennessee have more right to his money than the other 15 or so states that tax athletes? If they all followed suit, athletes couldn't afford to play any longer.

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03-26-2010, 09:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Fugu View Post
If they all followed suit, athletes couldn't afford to play any longer.
Seriously ?

LOL

I'm a huge fan of yours, due to your common sense approach ... but this is funny

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Old
03-26-2010, 10:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mulligan View Post
Seriously ?

LOL

I'm a huge fan of yours, due to your common sense approach ... but this is funny

Well, do the math then.

Or... consider that a team plays three games out of 82 in Nashville.


Are they being taxed for the time they're actually working in the state, or something arbitrary? I'm just asking what the principle is behind a tax system that has a flat rate:
Quote:
NBA and NHL players are hit for $2,500 per game with a limit of $7,500 for a maximum of three games. With Rafalski playing in the Central Division, his Red Wings visit Nashville three times a season. Western Conference teams in the NBA visit Memphis only two games per season.

Rafalski makes $6m/yr. Eaves is paid ~$525k, iirc. Furthermore, as division rivals, they play there 3x/yr, while an Eastern team, for example, may only go there once every two years.

This is the definition of an arbitrary and unfair tax law.


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Old
03-26-2010, 10:27 PM
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Ah, yes... the old "tax people who don't live in the state so we can still get reelected" move.

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Old
03-26-2010, 10:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mulligan View Post
Rafalski could quit being a professional atlete.

That wouldn't cost him a cent in Tennessee.
I got a better idea, how about all the teams stop going to Tennessee to play games.

I'm sure lost tax revenue from canceled games will solve the problem real quick.

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Old
03-26-2010, 10:58 PM
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Pretty unfair. These games theoretically make a considerable amount of money for local businesses and generate a pile of tax revenue. And you have to tax the players like this? Where it actually costs them money to play there?!?

Reminds me of when 'FLIM SPRINGFIELD' gouged those Hollywood folk with a pile of taxes because they were outsiders.

It'd be funny to see a team forfeit a meaningless game against Nashville as a protest. I'm not sure what penalty the team would face for a stunt like that, but it would look good on them. It'd damage the NHL pretty bad....but I'd still chuckle.

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustWingIt19 View Post
Interesting read....
Quote:
Detroit defenseman Brian Rafalski says Tennessee is unfairly taxing professional athletes to play in the state.

The Red Wings star has been running the numbers, and he estimates 17 teammates will be paying more money in taxes to face off against the Nashville Predators on Saturday night than they will earn for playing the game.

"My complaint with it is ... 17 teammates will be paying money out of their own pocket to play in Tennessee. It's a tax rate of over 100 percent," Rafalski said Friday.

From The Detroit News: http://detnews.com/article/20100326/...#ixzz0jL7Bkpb7

http://detnews.com/article/20100326/...new--jock-tax-
Is Rafalski saying that 17 of his teammates earn less than $205000 (82 * $2500) per year?
And I'm sure that they'll deduct that tax from federal tax.

JOL

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:13 PM
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Jeffrey93
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jol View Post
Is Rafalski saying that 17 of his teammates earn less than $205000 (82 * $2500) per year?
And I'm sure that they'll deduct that tax from federal tax.

JOL
"Paying taxes isn't his issue. A total of 18 states now charge what's commonly called a "jock tax" to make money off highly paid pro athletes visiting their teams. But Tennessee's tax, which took effect July 1, 2009, is different from the other 17 because the visitors cannot get any relief through a deduction when filing taxes back home."

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:14 PM
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becoming a greater problem for people who travel and do business, CEO's who oversee large projects- in and out , can't have an extended stay-

the problem seems to be with Tenn. as you can't claim it against your personal income tax

http://moneycentral.msn.com/content/Taxes/P112872.asp

Quote:
For instance, the report noted, not only do millionaire players get caught up in the tax -- but also every traveling member of the team's support staff, from coaches to trainers. And, remember, not every pro athlete is pulling down big money.

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:17 PM
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blame it on Michael Jordan
http://moneycentral.msn.com/content/Taxes/P112872.asp

Quote:
The nonresident tax is nothing new. The Tax Foundation, however, says it took on a new life in 1991 when the Chicago Bulls beat the Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA Finals -- and the state of California decided to go after a piece of Michael Jordan's income. The Tax Foundation report says that Illinois decided to retaliate the following year by levying a jock tax of its own, dubbed "Michael Jordan's Revenge" in the press.

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:27 PM
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Why aren't NFL players being taxed?

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03-26-2010, 11:30 PM
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NFL was proactive and made an agreement their players wouldn't get hit. MiLB players are also exempt.

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Iago View Post
NFL was proactive and made an agreement their players wouldn't get hit. MiLB players are also exempt.
How can a league be proactive? Was something given in return?

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fugu View Post
How can a league be proactive? Was something given in return?
If that's true it definitely seems shady. How can a sports league dictate tax laws and who they include and exclude?

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffrey93 View Post
If that's true it definitely seems shady. How can a sports league dictate tax laws and who they include and exclude?

Hence my comment about sniff tests above. If it's truly a "jock tax" then all pro athletes playing at a TN venue should be taxed-- because they're legally in the same group.

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:48 PM
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Jeffrey93
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fugu View Post
Hence my comment about sniff tests above. If it's truly a "jock tax" then all pro athletes playing at a TN venue should be taxed-- because they're legally in the same group.
Is the tax only applied in a certain district?? Aside from that...it makes zero sense to me how you pick and choose like this who you tax and who you don't.

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Old
03-26-2010, 11:58 PM
  #21
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Yes. I am not sure exactly what leverage the NFL had to get around it, but I remember before the Nationals moved back to Washington, MLB said they wouldn't consider moving a team back if DC implemented a jock tax.

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Old
03-27-2010, 08:39 AM
  #22
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Dirk Hoag does a bit of digging on the issue. NFL has rules that prevent it (so they can tell states and municipalities what to do...).

http://www.ontheforecheck.com/2010/3...lege-tax-draws

Quote:
There are 193 days in this NHL regular season, and players are basically paid "by the day". Let's use forward Drew Miller as an example. His salary this season is $525,000, working out to a daily rate of $2,720 (per CapGeek).
Tomorrow, let's first subtract the escrow that all NHL players are paying this year (recently 18%). Then, the state of Tennessee will dock him $2,500 for playing.
It's pretty easy to see how he comes out having "paid to come to work" tomorrow, and that's before we've even got to federal income and other taxes.
As to why this doesn't hit the NFL's Tennessee Titans and their visiting opponents, apparently the NFL already had rules in place that would have penalized the state if they had enacted such a tax on football players.
I know, that's as stunning as it sounds.
The link within has an article that says the Preds and Titans also have to pay the tax, but they do benefit from being in a state w/o an income tax. Michigan definitely has an income tax.

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Old
03-27-2010, 09:29 AM
  #23
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I'll be the first one to say that the TN jock tax is crap. Its very arbitrary and hurts the Preds just as much as it hurts other teams. If it were a federal tax we would be talking about a Supreme Court case and the constitutionality of the tax.

Why NFL and MLB players are exempt is beyond me.

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Old
03-27-2010, 12:01 PM
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Lots of places have "jock tax", it's been around for a long time, as a general principle it seems a perfectly reasonable thing to do, frankly.

But I don't get Rafalski's math - at minimum salary, it's nearly $7k income/game. Tennessee is taking $2500/game with an annual cap of $7500. How does that work out to a 100%+ tax?

EDIT: saw the later post. That's just bad math.

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Old
03-28-2010, 05:21 PM
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What a joke of a tax.

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