The Washington Post

The Redskins and Ravens: Great for taxes

Marlyn Diem of Capitol Heights holds her RGIII jersey at FedEx Field. (Photo by Jonathan Newton/The Washington Post)

You do. Really.

That would be Peter Franchot. He is Maryland’s comptroller. That means he’s in charge of Maryland tax dollars. He’s the Tax Man!

And he estimates, based on a study his office did a few years ago, that each home playoff game nets the state $2.5 million in sales and other taxes.

“That’s $5 million in sales taxes,” Franchot told me, doing some quick math. “Thank you very much Ravens and Redskins.”

The increase in taxes comes from sales of high-priced playoff tickets, souvenirs, and concessions as well as taxes on bonuses for players and coaches. There’s also a good deal of spending that goes on away from the games too, Franchot thinks.

“When both teams are in the playoffs, there’s a synergistic impact where folks just feel better in Maryland, and when folks feel better there’s more economic activity,” Franchot said. “Maryland citizens will be stepping a little more lightly because they are happy for their football teams. We have this silver lining to the playoffs.”

Franchot will be the happiest Tax Man in America this weekend.

Not surprisingly, the Tax Man — normally a diehard Redskins fan — is rooting for a Ravens-Redskins Super Bowl matchup.

“Even if I’m too optimistic, I believe all of this has a measurable impact,” he said. “It’s great for Maryland.”

Michael Rosenwald is a reporter on the Post's local enterprise team. He writes about the intersection of technology, business and culture.

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