Tuesday, July 10, 2012

CNN Money is catching up to us: 'Olympians face financial hardship'

The obvious process is to determine how rough the athletes have it versus how easy the governing bodies have it is to do simple math. First we read all their 501c forms and then consider what to do about it.

To begin here is a link as to what USA Swimming Olympic athletes receive: [Link]

For more of an overview for subjects like health insurance services and grants look at this link: [Link]

Note, per the first link above 26-men and 26-women will make $3,000 a month only if they sign a partner agreement. I suspect this agreement is in regards to USA Swimming utilizing their images and names for licensing. If you don't sign the agreement the athlete makes $21,000.

If USA Swimming receives 100-million a year; (reference CNN money: [Link] ), then why can't USA Swimming pay our athletes $52,000-a-year or 27% of that 100-million as a stipend?

Don't you think that a non-profit should spend at least 51% of it's money on the subject of the non-profit; i.e. growing the sport and fielding a real fine Olympic team?

From CNN Money:
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- American Olympians are just weeks away from representing their country in London, but many will return home -- medals won or lost -- to face significant financial challenges. 
Unlike athletes in many other countries, American Olympians receive no direct support from the federal government.

And the U.S. Olympic Committee, with a $170 million annual operating budget spread across all sports, offers health insurance and stipends to only a limited number of competitors.
Athletes, without government support, are instead forced to cobble together an income made up of prize money, apparel contracts, grants and part-time work.



Anonymous said...

Tony -- it drives me crazy that you actually link to information regarding the topic of your post but dont actually read it or read the page wher it originated from.

If you did, you would find that post grad and pro National Team athletes who participate in the Athlete Partnership Program ($3000/month or $36,000/year) agree to do two appearances to support USA Swimming programs. These appearances are explicitly NOT in support of USA Swimming sponsors.

If you choose not to particiapte in the Athlete Partnership Program, you are still supported at the same level as an National Team NCAA eligible athlete ($1750/month).

The Raven (coming soon to...) said...

Is this a surprise?

All of the money that flows into USA Swimming ends up trickling into the hands of the sport's leadership and their friends.

With vehicles like the US Sports Insurance Company, USA Swimming's for profit self insurance company in Barbados, there are a multitude of ways to make the money disappear.

With Chuck Wielgus at the helm for too long now, the pattern of swimming's money being for anything but swimmers has become the standard. It would take radical transparency, possible only with a complete reset of the organization, for USA Swimming ever to return to a mindset where the sport of swimming is about... well, swimming and swimmers.

Chuck Wielgus makes over $750,000 a year with a nice chunk of further deferred compensation to vest in January. His counterpart at the USOC, whose budget is almost 20 times what Wielgus manages makes about $300,000 a year less. How can that not be viewed as totally out of kilter?

We just sat through an Olympic Trials that was little more than a money grab. The races were thrilling, but the sport side of it always will be. The business side involved USA Swimming setting time standards that they knew would be met by around 2000 swimmers. The claims that they didn't know so many would make the cut ring very hollow when a simple search of their own database would clearly show the likely numbers. Curious this mistake happened in a year they decided to put future Trials out to bid. Any city bidding on the Trials will look strictly at the number of bodies that bought hotel rooms and place their bid accordingly.

I can't fault any parent for taking their child to the Trials. If my own child was ranked 167th in an event with no hope of even making semi's, you can bet I would be there spending money and effectively pouring it right into the pockets of Mr. Wielgus and all his friends. I know this and so does the insidious leadership of USA Swimming.

Until the entire swimming community sees this outfit for what it is, a money grabbing bunch of thugs who care nothing about the development of the sport, we will remain the swim mafia's docile cattle.

Unfortunately, since Wielgus and Company fail to effectively deal with the problems of persistent sexual abuse, a number of pedophile coaches inexplicably still in the ranks will likewise continue to see our children as sheep to be "helped over the fence."

Tony Austin said...

I did read the agreement but made an error. A correction has been made. I crossed out the offending sentence.

Here is a link to the agreement contract

Besides the USA Swimming events, the athlete must swim at 3 Grand Prix meets:

Provide a detailed calendar of events that you will participate in during the 2011-2012 season that will contribute to achieving your ultimate goal. Keep in mind you must compete at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials- Swimming, and a minimum of three Grand Prix Series events. Open Water Athletes must compete in at least one FINA 10K World Cup event and at least two Grand Prix Series events. Open Water Athletes may use a combination of FINA 10K World Cup events and the USA Swimming Grand Prix series to meet this requirement.


Tony Austin said...

Yes, Raven, if USA Swimming is going to be run like a business then they should be taxed as a business. If they want to be a non-profit then they have to stop profiting and exploiting the subject of their non-profit.

The Raven said...

First and foremost, a business is run for the benefit of its shareholders. In our instance the share holders are the dues paying swimmers.

What could really be done for swimmers, coaches and parents with $30 million a year? Tremendous things at not nearly the current costs.

The misuse of swimming's resources is staggering and sickening.