Michigan Capital Confidential (12/14/13) Skorup, Jarrett
A bill proposed by Michigan state Rep. Tim Kelly would legalize the selling of event tickets for higher than face value on the secondary market. Kelly argues that ticket purchasers are the owners of their tickets and are entitled to sell them if they choose. "This legislation is about allowing the man on the street to sell tickets at fair market value to willing buyers," he says. "It creates more fairness and is a common-sense measure that allows the free market to decide the price of any given ticket. If a willing buyer wants to buy a ticket from a willing seller, there's no reason why government should get involved." Supporters say the bill offers consumers choice and removes the need to commit police resources to enforce the current anti-scalping statute. University of Michigan-Flint economist Mark Perry notes the legislation guarantees that fans own their tickets and permits mutually agreed-upon prices. He contends that the elimination of price controls on tickets would allow market forces to shape ticket prices, to the benefit of sporting and concert fans. Michigan Citizens Action executive director Linda Teeter also backs Kelly's bill, arguing that the anti-scalping law is outdated and most consumers are likely unaware of the ordinance.