Atlanta Floats Ticket Tax

The city of Atlanta may be facing a $140 million budget crisis, and one local official has come up with a plan to help offset the debt – taxing tickets to sporting events and concerts.

Councilman Jim Maddox recently proposed a $1 surcharge on tickets to large events at venues including the Georgia Dome, Turner Field, Philips Arena and Lakewood Amphitheatre, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

"We need to at some point recapture some of these costs because we are in a [budget] crisis," he told the paper.

The $1 fee, which follows the lead of cities including Chicago, Cleveland and Pittsburgh that charge amusement taxes on tickets, would reportedly go toward police and cleanup costs associated with big events.

Previous attempts to impose such a fee have been unsuccessful in the city.

Officials floated the idea of a 10 percent sports and entertainment surcharge in 1992 to offset costs associated with hosting the 1996 summer Olympics, the Journal-Constitution said, but gained little support. Similarly, in 1999, officials proposed a $1 ticket surcharge that reportedly was turned down because of contractual issues with the city and its sports teams.