The Norman Transcript

Headlines

October 16, 2012

Coburn identifying government waste in annual report

NORMAN — Did you know the National Football League, which received $184 million from its 32-member teams in 2010, is registered as a nonprofit with the Internal Revenue Service? And that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell reported $11.6 million in salary and perks in 2010?

This sports league exemption is available to the NFL, the National Hockey League and the Professional Golfers’ Association, among others, because of a provision in the tax code that allows industry and trade groups such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Natural Resources Defense Council to qualify as nonprofit and as tax-exempt. These industry groups cannot promote a specific brand within an industry but may promote the industry as a whole.

That loophole costs taxpayers an estimated $91 million according to U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, R- Okla.

Coburn released his annual “Wastebook” report today, citing incidents of government extravagance and decrying tax loopholes he said contributes to the growing deficit.

“The problem in Washington is politicians are very specific about what we should fund but not specific about what we should cut,” Coburn said. “As a result, we are chasing robotic squirrels and countless other low-priority projects over a fiscal cliff.”

Oklahoma is not exempt from the pork, Coburn said. “Wastebook 2012” reports that the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission voted to keep a “rarely used Lake Murray State Park Airport open,” even though the airport reportedly averages only one flight per month and has no planes based there.

The Federal Aviation Administration funds the airport to the tune of $150,000, according to “Wastebook 2012,” but almost all of that money is used in other places throughout the state.

While it is true that one person’s trash is another’s treasure, it’s hard not to question some of the spending Coburn identifies, given the current state of the economy and the multi-trillion dollar deficient facing this nation.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Headlines
  • Oklahoma City Memorial Bombing museum gets tech boost

    OKLAHOMA CITY — A memorial and museum built to remember the worst act of domestic terrorism on American soil is in the midst of a $7 million upgrade so it can better portray how different the world was when Timothy McVeigh blew up the ...

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Is Okla. backing off accountability?

    One by one, K-12 education reforms passed in previous years by Oklahoma lawmakers are being targeted for weakening or repeal....

    April 19, 2014

  • Hope Trunk travels to Norman

    The rustle of paper could be heard as students meticulously folded one crane, then another and another Friday afternoon. After reading the inspiring story, “Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes,” Cleveland Elementary School fifth graders ...

    April 19, 2014

  • Congressman Cole reflects on recovery

    Congressman Tom Cole’s home in Moore was not hit by the May 20 tornado but it came pretty close. His wife has made it clear she wants a saferoom, he said. In a visit to the Transcript on Friday afternoon, Cole talked about tornado ...

    April 19, 2014

  • Gaylord to get $35,000 grant for poverty project

    A team from Gaylord College is among the first winners in a national competition to fund innovative news experiments that serve communities, the Online News Association has announced....

    April 19, 2014

  • U.S. puts off pipeline decision

    WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is putting off its decision on the Keystone XL oil pipeline, likely until after the November elections, by extending its review of the controversial project indefinitely....

    April 19, 2014

  • Garage sale to benefit Team Jamie’s Crew set

    A garage sale to benefit Team Jamie’s Crew will start at 9 a.m. today at 1510 Melrose Drive....

    April 19, 2014

  • Sonic plans expansion

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma-based Sonic Corp. plans to open 1,000 new drive-in restaurants nationwide over the next 10 years, expanding the chain by about 30 percent, the company said....

    April 19, 2014

  • Singing Sooners show set

    The University of Oklahoma School of Music presents the Singing Sooners Spring Show at 8 p.m. Friday, April 25 in the Sharp Concert Hall, Catlett Music Center. Jim Graves and Stephen Ziegler serve as directors for the group....

    April 19, 2014

  • Study: Half of jailed youths have injury

    NEW YORK — About half of all 16- to 18-year-olds coming into New York City’s jails say they had a traumatic brain injury before being incarcerated, most caused by assaults, according to a new study that’s the latest in a growing body of ...

    April 19, 2014