California State Golf Tax Defeated
The initial battle over the tax on golf in California has been won as the proposed tax was not part of the final budget deal.
While this is good victory, it is important that golfers remain vigilant on this and other issues facing the game. More battles in the future should be anticipated.
The golf tax was a near certainty at one point during the budget discussions in the beginning of the year; and was successfully stopped with the power the golf industry and individual golfers working together to protect our great game.
Such a proposal was not included in this year’s budget agreement and for good reason: It would impose a risky and inequitable burden on a golf industry in California that has been particularly hard hit by the economic downturn. An additional tax on playing golf and golf-related activities would cause significant harm–reducing play, slashing golf and service economy jobs, and shutting down courses that are already operating on slim margins.
California’s broken budget system will not be repaired by breaking the state’s golf industry. As the Governor’s Executive Order creating the commission rightly said, “California’s long term prosperity requires that employers and entrepreneurs invest, remain and grow in the state…” A tax on golf will do just the opposite, reducing jobs at golf courses and in the hotel, restaurant and service industry.
The California Alliance for Golf (CAG), whose office is headquatered at the NCGA in Pebble Beach, was instrumental in its leadership of the opposition to the tax.
Below are examples of the fervent opinions and passion the proposal generated over the last month.