Congressman Aaron Schock (R-IL) today introduced The Olympic Tax Elimination Act. Legislation that would exempt U.S. Olympic medal winners from paying federal taxes on the medals they receive in London. Schock has teamed up with Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) to introduce companion legislation in the House. As the law stands now, Olympic medalist receive honorariums in the form of cash payments of $25,000 for gold, $15,000 for silver, and $10,000 for bronze. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) collects 35 percent of those respective earnings.
"One of the greatest joys of the Olympics is to watch our athletes perform at the highest levels of competition and to seem them stand on the podium to be rewarded for their success," said Congressman Aaron Schock. "Apparently, the sacrifices they make for their success doesn't stop once they receive their Olympic medals. The federal government has to penalize our athletes by taxing them for the medals they have rightfully earned. This is a classic example of how complicated and costly our tax code has become and why tax reform is badly needed."
"Our tax code is a complicated and burdensome mess that too often punishes success, and the tax imposed on Olympic medal winners is a classic example of this madness," said Senator Marco Rubio. "Athletes representing our nation overseas in the Olympics shouldn't have to worry about an extra tax bill waiting for them back home. I'm proud to work with Aaron Schock to make sure that Olympians who dedicate their lives to athletic excellence are not punished when they achieve it."
The Olympic Tax Elimination Act, would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to eliminate the tax on Olympic medals and prize money won by United States athletes. If enacted into law, the gross income of Olympic athletes "shall not include the value of any prize or award won by the taxpayer in athletic competition in the Olympic Games." This would apply to prizes and awards received after December 31, 2011.