Issues on High school sports appears again during the 2016 Legislative session

Senators met Thursday at the Florida Capitol to discuss issues with Florida High School Athletic Association.

This Senate Bill 1026 was introduced by Senator David Simmons. If this bill is passed it will allow High schools to be a part of the FHSAA per sport basis versus being a full time member, as well as limit the FHSAA to collect money from school related events.

Schools that are apart of FHSAA are concerned about why a non profit corporation is able to benefit financially from their sporting events.

Senators showed their concern about what Florida high schools could possibly lose with this bill. Lost Revenue is a major issue that may prevent this bill from being successful. Senators were quickly reminded the goal was to benefit the students.

Sen. Bill Montfort (R) representing Florida District 3 wanted to be clear with what would happen with or without this bill being passed.

“I don’t want to do something that sounds good and looks good but has unintended consequences on revenue,” Montford said.

Simmons then responded informing Montford the focus was to help the High schools save money, “the idea is to deal with the issues at hand and that is charges that exceed the actual service related to the particular sport event,”Simmons said.

Small schools in the state of Florida will be positively impacted if this bill is passed because the FHSAA strictly enforces that schools under their association must come under compliances for all sports. These schools believe they should have a choice on which sports join the FHSAA, based off the population of each individual sport.

Coaches are concerned about student athletes being a part of major events such as the playoffs because their school isn’t a member of the FHSAA. Professionals believe all of their students have what it takes and should all be allowed to participate based off performance and not association status.

Tod Creneti, head football coach at St. Stevens Episcopal School expresses his concern for this bill and most importantly his student athletes.

“I believe I have the ability to be uniquely placed in lives of young people and make an impact,” Creneti said.

With his role Creneti says he will continue to support this bill being passed.

The Education committee ended the meeting with this bill being reported favorably.