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Ohio Tax Plan Hits Concerts, Sports, Even Bowling

He worries that some cash-strapped county fairs won't survive if they're forced to give up 5 percent of their gate fees to the government.

"I don't know that it's wise at this time," Bates said.

Bowling alley owner Marty Teifke agreed that it would hurt to pay a tax on lane rentals.

"It's not easy to raise prices, and the economy is not the best around here" said Teifke, who runs Timbers Bowling in Maumee near Toledo. "It scares me to hear this."

Most entertainment businesses and groups that would be affected by a wider sales tax are still trying to figure out what the impact might be and how they'll respond, including Cedar Fair Entertainment Co., owners of Cedar Point amusement park in Sandusky and Kings Island near Cincinnati.

Both parks have fought against past attempts by local governments that have tried to tax tickets and parking.

The addition of a 5 percent state sales tax on admissions would amount to $2.75 on the price of a $54.99 Cedar Point ticket at the gate.

A $22 Cincinnati Reds ticket in the upper deck ticket would generate $1.10 for the state.

Close to 70 cities and villages in Ohio already have some sort of admission tax with most coming in at 3 percent. Cleveland's is at 8 percent.

Tickets for high school sports wouldn't be exempt from the governor's proposal.

Jim Stoyle, athletic director at Centerburg High School north of Columbus, said he wouldn't want the cost of admission to go up. "That's the one thing I hate in sports today," he said.

Game tickets at the school now are $6 for adults and $4 for students. He's concerned that families would be stretched thin if the price goes up, especially for those with several children playing, and that the teams would suffer as well.

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