Monster Jams

City could add fee to tickets for Nutter Center events

The additional 5% would be charged for tickets $20 or more on events at Wright State University’s Nutter Center.

Wright State-affiliated events, like men’s and women’s basketball games, would be exempt from this fee, said Fairborn City Manager Rob Anderson. Other events, like the Disney on Ice shows or concerts would be subject to the admissions fee.

Danielle Wolfe, revenue manager for the city of Fairborn, said there was an admissions fee in the past. It was repealed in 1966, but this ordinance would “revive” the fee.

“The Nutter Center brings in quite a few events that require the city’s involvement,” Wolfe said. “So this is a way for us to get additional revenue. This is not coming out of the Nutter Center’s pocket at all.”

A ticket that costs $20 would cost $21 with the additional admission fee. A $100 ticket would cost $5 more if the admissions fee legislation were to pass.

The city hopes to generate between $150,000 and $240,000 annually from the admissions fee to offset infrastructure costs. The funds generated from the admissions fee would be deposited into Fairborn’s General Fund.

“This additional revenue would go towards capital improvements, parks, roads,” Wolfe said. “It would go directly back into the city.”

Wolfe said the city kept residents and those visiting the Nutter Center from out of town in mind when drawing up the legislation for the admissions fee.

“This is a minimal amount. We’re not significantly affecting the consumer,” Wolfe said.

The levy on admissions fees would take effect July 1, 2020. Tickets sold before that date would not have the admissions fee tacked on to the price.

There will be a public hearing on the admissions fee on Dec. 2. in the Fairborn City Council chambers at 44 W. Hebble Ave. 

There are currently 66 other cities in Ohio that have this kind of fee on admissions. This type of fee produces $23 million for municipalities annually, Anderson said.

The city of Cleveland has a similar admissions fee to the one proposed in Fairborn.

Cleveland charges an additional 8% of the ticket cost. According to data from the Ohio Department of Taxation, Cleveland collected $22.9 million in calendar year 2016 with the admissions fee.

Cincinnati collected nearly $5.6 million with its admissions fee. The tax rate in Cincinnati is 3%. The city of Monroe in Butler County collected $39,094 from the admissions fee. Monroe’s rate is also 5%.

Officials with Wright State and the Nutter Center said they had not had time to review the admissions fee and therefore could not appropriately comment.

“Wright State University has not had a chance to review this proposal. The university is reserving comment until it has had time to review the proposed legislation. Wright State plans to work with the City of Fairborn as it considers this proposal,” said Wright State University spokesman Seth Bauguess.

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