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The Cyber Boxing Zone Newswire -- JULY 27:2001
Northwest News
(fight schedules, news on officials certification, Oregon Commission business)
by Katherine Dunn

July 27, 2001

Washington State Pro Fight Schedule

The Washington Department of Licensing released the following dates for professional boxing matches scheduled so far in the coming months.

August 4—Saturday, Brian Halquist Productions at the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, WA.

September 8—Saturday, The Lucky Eagle Casino, Rochester, WA. Matchmaker Benny Georgino. First bell is at 7:30 p.m.

September 29—Saturday, Brian Halquist Productions at the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, WA. First bell at 7 p.m.

November 10—Saturday, Brian Halquist at the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, WA. First bell at 7 p.m.


Aug. 4---Saturday Night At the Emerald Queen

Promoter Brian Halquist and the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, WA host this show. Matchmaker Bob Oleson reports the line-up as follows:

In the 10 round cruiserweight main event: Ed Dalton (25-7-3) of Boise, ID vs Shane Swartz (14-0) of Denver, CO.

A welterweight 6 round re-match features Alfonso "Scooter" Meza (9-9) of Zilla, WA vs Chris Huntwork (3-7) of Portland, OR. Meza won their first encounter.

Jr welterweight James Alger is proposed for another six round bout but his opponent has yet to be named.

A trio of four round bouts is scheduled for the undercard:

A womens lightweight match features Jessica LaPointe (2-1) of Bremerton, WA vs Tina Makihele, making her pro debut. Makihele is originally from Tonga and now fighting out of Tacoma.

Mario Higuera (1-0) of Forest Grove, OR is scheduled for a light heavyweight bout against Neal Stephens (1-1) of Houston, TX.

Welterweights Jorge Alonzo (0-1) of Portland, OR vs Manuel Reyes of othello, WA are also scheduled.

First bell rings at 7 p.m.
Saturday, July 28—Amateur Action in Seattle

The irrepressible Bob Jarvis, coach of the Hillman City Boxing club in Seattle hosts a Saturday night smoker on July 28 at the Hillman City Gym, 5601 Rainier Ave. South, Seattle 98118. A $10 donation is requested at the door. Call 206-722-3239 for details. Jarvis says he’s lined up a couple of heavyweight matches with a lot of bang potential and there will be a dozen or so bouts on the card.


Officials Certification Group Founded

Tom Sporar is a busy man, an accountant and long time amateur boxing official, among his other interests. Sporar is also an inspector for the State of Washington Department of Licensing for professional boxing matches. Now Sporar and a group of like-minded colleagues have taken on a new project, the founding of Northwest Boxing Officials, (NBO) a non-profit organization intended to "organize, train, certify and assign professional boxing officials." On the board of directors with Sporar are referee Joe Macaluso and judge Tim Wood of Washington, and judge Denis Ryan of Oregon. The NBO is officially operational as of August 1, 2001.

New Location for Oregon Boxing Commission

The offices of the Oregon State Police Boxing and Wrestling Commission have moved. As of July 23, 01, the new address is:

3400 State Street Ste G-750
Salem, OR 97301

The phone number remains the same: 503-378-8739
The FAX number also remains the same: 503-304-9157


Money Crunch Hits Oregon Boxing Commission

A recent state court decision in a law suit over the right to tax pay per view broadcasts means the Oregon State Police Boxing and Wrestling Commission has lost the majority of the revenue that supported the agency. OSP Budget Director, Major Danny Bisgaard says belt-tightening is in order but that the agency will continue to operate at least for the time being with funds drawn from the already lean State Police budget.

Captain Ed Mouery, until recently the supervisor of the Commission, says the Superintendant of State Police is committed to maintaining the agency. Two new Commission members were sworn in at the July meeting. The new members are John Neal, a retired businessman from Wilsonville, and H. Robert Hamilton, an attorney from Bend.

Oregon is not alone in facing this particular financial problem. For a decade or so, the Oregon Commission has made most of the money required to run the agency by means of a 6% tax on the sale of Pay Per View broadcasts of pro boxing and wrestling shows within the state boundaries. Florida and Oklahoma are among other states with similar taxes to support their boxing regulatory agencies.

The attraction of the pay per view tax to support boxing regulation is understandable. Few state legislatures are willing to support regulation with money from their general funds so most boxing commissions depend on taxes on ticket sales of shows promoted under their jurisdiction, with minor additions from licensing fees. Many states, including Oregon, don’t have enough shows during a given year to support the agency.

This arrangement also creates a built-in conflict of interest, where the money to pay commission costs and salaries is directly dependent on the success of the businesses that the agency regulates. A similar situation might exist if the wages of a government health inspector were a percentage of the gross of the restaurants he examined. He might not notice the cockroaches in the kitchen. He might be reluctant to shut down a diner no matter how many cases of salmonella came spewing out of it.

Critics have long claimed that slack or non-existent enforcement of safety and procedural rules are a natural result of tangled money connections between the regulatory agency and the events it regulates. The commission may be inclined to allow anything at all to make sure the show will go on. Independent funding is the cure most often prescribed for the problem. Taxing pay per view events outside of the state jurisdiction which draw money from customers inside the jurisdiction seemed an ideal solution. Several states jumped on the PPV tax angle in the 1990’s.

Then, in 1998, a federal lawsuit brought by PPV broadcast company TVKO, a branch of HBO, prevented California from introducing a new pay per view tax. The federal ruling found that the tax was in violation of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution because it taxed the broadcasts on the basis of their content. With that decision, the shivering started in other states that already taxed PPV.

In 1999, TVKO filed a similar suit in the state of Oregon, asking for relief from the tax. In May of this year (2001) the Oregon Tax Court handed down a summary judgement in favor of TVKO. What’s good for TVKO works for all other PPV broadcasters as well. More than 80% of the Commission’s income dried up on the spot.

Meanwhile similar suits are taking place in Florida, Oklahoma and elsewhere.

Recent federal boxing legislation says there can be no professional boxing without regulation by a commission. If a state lacks a commission it can contract to bring in regulators from another state to enforce the laws on a per show basis. Most states would be reluctant to make such an agreement for various reasons including liability issues. In effect, if there’s no state commission, there can not be any pro boxing in that state.

The significant exception is Indian reservations. Tribes are permitted to create their own commissions and regulations in keeping with federal requirements and with rules at least as strict as those of the state in which the reservation lies. Most boxing now takes place in casinos, many of them on reservations.

In Oregon, the commission is under the supervision of the Oregon State Police. Budget Director Danny Bisgaard says the financial hole that must be filled to keep the commission in operation through this biennium is between $140,000 and $160,000. Bisgaard says, "My best advice to the Superintendant (of State Police) and the Governor would probably be to put together a budget package to ask the legislature for money from the general fund."

Boxing is a controversial topic and many state legislatures have historically been unwilling to provide money for the regulation of a sport that affects few people and which a lot of voters think should be banned. Without an operating Commission, boxing would, for all real purposes, banned outside of the reservations.

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