Dockers, Eagles cry poor over tax - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Dockers, Eagles cry poor over tax

By Justin Chadwick 30/07/2010 05:04:07 PM Comments (0)

WA football has been boosted by a new 10-year, multi-million dollar sponsorship deal, but for West Coast and Fremantle it could be a case of money coming in one door and going out the other.

On Friday, Carlton and United Breweries extended its lucrative sponsorship deal with the Western Australian Football Commission in an agreement that will pour tens of millions of dollars into WA football over the next decade.

But much of the windfall for both the Eagles and Dockers is likely to be offset by the AFL's proposed attendance levy increase, which could cost both clubs about $300,000 a season.

As part of its equalisation policy developed to help poorer clubs, the AFL plans to tax West Coast, Fremantle, Collingwood, Essendon, Hawthorn and Geelong an extra $1 per fan at home games.

As it stands, all 16 clubs pay a $2 levy for every person through the turnstiles.

"It (the increase) will mean that West Coast then, instead of paying $600,000 into that fund, would pay $900,000 per annum. It's a lot of money," Eagles chief executive Trevor Nisbett said.

"And Fremantle would be doing likewise in the years ahead.

"That's one of the reasons why this deal with CUB is so fundamental with us going forward.

"If we didn't have this deal at this level we would be back in the pack with other clubs, and that's what's going to happen if we lose sponsorships."

Fremantle claim the levy increase would effectively wipe out much of their profit.

"We've been very open in our dialogue with the AFL about the proposed changes to the equalisation levy. That dialogue will continue and we'll be formally writing to the AFL next week," Fremantle chief executive Steve Rosich said.

Both Rosich and Nisbett said the AFL didn't fully appreciate the financial input both clubs made to WA football at WAFL, country and junior levels.

"The Victorian-based clubs probably think of the two clubs (in Perth) as powerhouses, but in reality what we do is subsidise the development and growth of the game here," Nisbett said.

"From our point of view it's probably lost on some people and that's one of the problems that we have to illustrate in the east, that we need great partnerships like CUB to fund junior football, WAFL football, country football, as well as our own clubs.

"Hopefully in the future they'll understand that even better than they do at the moment.

"They also want an equal competition both on and off the field. Hopefully they're looking at all those angles before they make another announcement on what they decide to tax."

Meanwhile, Subiaco Oval could be renamed as early as next year, with the WAFC in negotiations with a company in regards to the naming rights.

"There's a few issues we need to deal with and we're in strong dialogue with one company at the moment," WAFC chief executive Wayne Bradshaw confirmed.

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