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Michigan Legislator Wants to Legalize Ticket ‘Scalping’

Thursday, June 5, 2014   (0 Comments)
Heartlander Magazine (05/01/14) Gantert, Tom

Michigan state Rep. Tim Kelly has introduced legislation to end the 1931 prohibition on ticket scalping in the state. Although there is little enforcement of ticket scalping laws, Kelly believes the state should "either prosecute everybody or don’t prosecute anybody. Right now, it’s a government-sanctioned monopoly. If somebody buys a ticket, [they] should be able to do whatever they please.” Strong opposition to the bill from casinos, Michigan State University, the Broadway League, Michigan State University’s Wharton Center, the University of Michigan, and all of the Detroit professional sports venues expressed concern the legislation would enable ticket resale businesses to obtain large numbers of tickets and resell them at higher prices. The Broadway League's Tom Ferrugia says other measures could help venues maintain control of ticket prices and distribution, such as requiring third-party disclosures, customer agreements that rescind the sale of tickets resold for more than face value, or written consent to resell tickets at a higher price. Duquesne University economics professor Antony Davies supports the practice of scalping because it says it's the market's way of fixing inefficiencies in the system.

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