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April 01, 1963
TRACK'S COLD WAR HEATS UP
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April 01, 1963

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TRACK'S COLD WAR HEATS UP

The Amateur Athletic Union, an organization which must hold world records in the standing about-face and the twist, has recently been giving exhibitions in both of these rather dubious skills. First, after agreeing to give automatic sanction to any open track meet conducted by the U.S. Track and Field Federation, the AAU forced Parry O'Brien to withdraw from the first USTFF indoor championships in Milwaukee, threatening to suspend him from international competition should he compete.

Now the AAU, having asked for a letter of clarification from General Douglas MacArthur, the arbitrator who negotiated the present uneasy peace between the AAU and the USTFF, has distorted the intent of the letter to claim that it gives it complete control over open track and field, which, in fact, it does not.

The AAU maintains that international rules require "the withdrawal of an AAU sanction if USTFF forces acceptance of a sanction upon a meet director." What MacArthur really said was: "No international body...can properly establish rules governing an intra-American athletic competition."

Confronted by this misinterpretation, the USTFF met in Kansas City this week to consider what course to adopt. "We will take a much firmer position," said an indignant Walter Byers, executive director of the NCAA, upon the eve of the meeting. "This has gone on long enough."

Indeed it has, and the USTFF, which controls almost all the athletes and facilities in track and field, is in a position to force the AAU to abide by its own agreements.

GOLF AND TAXES

Like many businessmen, those who guide the financial ways of the nation's golf clubs are taking a hard look at their tax situations this year. For one thing, with government curbs on expense-account spending, they look forward to reduced revenues.

Some of the hard facts were presented this weekend to the Massachusetts Golf Association by Walter A. Slowinski, lawyer and tax expert with a Washington firm. There are no less than 28 different taxes that may be imposed on a golf course, ranging from social security to liquor. On the 20% club-dues tax alone, some $70 million is collected annually. Indeed, of all the "temporary" 20% wartime taxes imposed during World War II, only two remain—those on sports-club dues and those on admissions to racetracks. The 20% cabaret, jewelry and fur taxes all have been reduced to 10%, but golf clubs don't have Washington lobbies.

Now a new tax form—2845—is being sent to the nation's golf clubs. It appears designed to disqualify a club's tax-exempt status if the club is being used extensively for outside parties, weddings, Rotary and Kiwanis meetings and the like. Some clubs, indeed, Slowinski said, are in danger of finding themselves in a 52% corporate tax bracket if they cater to a large number of outside groups.

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