|Premier Soccer Services is requesting The Woodlands Township waive the sports field rental fees for the tournament, and provide in-kind support services.
During the same period of time in 2015 that is being requested for the use of sports fields for the tournament in 2016, the total field rental fees generated was $1,440. Using a field rental rate similar to the one approved by the Board of Directors for the Texas Rush Memorandum of Understanding, the field rental and lights fee for the proposed tournament would amount to $12,121. The in-kind support services such as trash removal, restroom maintenance and field preparation are services that are either already included in the parks budget or that can be easily absorbed with little fiscal impact.
Per the documentation provided by Premier Soccer Services to The Woodlands Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB), the tournament could have significant economic impact on The Woodlands Township. The National Association of Sports Commissions (NASC) Economic Impact Calculator estimates that the tournament generated $6,344,946 in direct spending by event spectators at the 2015 tournament hosted in San Antonio.
The CVB Board of Directors voted to provide Copa Rayados Internacional with a 25% rebate of hotel tax generated in The Woodlands by hotel rooms sold for the tournament. This rebate will be based off of the actual hotel occupancy tax generated for The Woodlands Township, which is a tax of 9% of the room rate. For example, if the tournament sells 3,000 rooms within The Woodlands Township boundaries at an average rate of $119, this would result in occupancy tax revenue of $32,130. At the 25% rate, the CVB would provide a rebate of $8,032.50 to the tournament.
|Premier Soccer Services, LLC has been in contact with The Woodlands Township and The Woodlands Convention and Visitors Bureau in regards to the community hosting the Copa Rayados International for 3 years (2016-2018). Premier Soccer Services has hosted this tournament in San Antonio but would like to move to a community with all weather turf fields to limit the potential for tournament cancelations due to bad / rainy weather. The Woodlands Township is attractive to tournament organizers due to the development of the all-weather sports fields at Gosling Sportfields Complex (3 all weather turf fields, 2 grass fields) and the re-development of Bear Branch Sportfields (4 all weather turf fields, 3 grass fields) and Alden Bridge Sports Park (2 all weather turf fields and 6 grass fields) and their proximity to each other.
Premier Soccer Services, LLC is requesting that Copa Rayados International be permitted to conduct the event in the community which would run November 23-27, Thanksgiving week, which is a traditional down or low use period at the Township’s sports fields (Attachment A) Further they would like to be permitted to conduct this event in the community for a period of three years (2016-2018). It is estimated this tournament would bring in 160-200 teams, with an estimated 4,000 room nights- 90% of the teams would be from outside of The Woodlands and 33% of the teams would be international.
Premier Soccer Services, LLC produces a number of these types of tournaments around the country such as The Open Cup in Decatur, Alabama, The Tennessee Cup, in Nashville Tennessee, and the Naples Cup in Naples, Florida.
The CVB Board of Directors voted to provide Copa Rayados Internacional with a 25% rebate of hotel tax generated in The Woodlands by hotel rooms sold for the tournament. This rebate will be based off of the actual hotel occupancy tax generated for The Woodlands Township, which is a tax of 9% of the room rate. For example, if the tournament sells 3,000 rooms within The Woodlands Township boundaries at an average rate of $119, this would result in occupancy tax revenue of $32,130. At the 25% rate, the CVB would provide a rebate of $8,032.50 to the tournament (Attachment B).
In return for providing a rebate, the CVB asks that the tournament provide access to information for tournament attendees staying at hotels in The Woodlands. The CVB needs to capture attendee information for re-marketing purposes and will ask attendees to join the CVB’s mailing list via tournament sponsored e-blasts or tournament registration forms.
Per Township Order 019-09, “The President is authorized to approve special promotions, rates and fees, including waiving, all or in part any established rate or fee, for Parks and recreation facilities that are designed to market and maximize utilization of such facilities.” As this event maximizes the use of the sports fields during a low or down period and has the potential for significant economic impact, the Board of Directors may consider waiving all or a portion of the field use rental fees and enter into a Host Venue Sponsorship Agreement similar to those with World Triathlon Corporation for the Memorial Hermann Ironman Texas, The Woodlands Marathon, the YMCA Dragon Boat Team Challenge, the Waterway Arts Council for the Waterway Arts Festival, and the Nike South Invitational, Nike Team Nationals, and Friday Night Lights cross country events.
Other options for Board consideration: include:
- take no action, which still enables Premier Soccer Services the option to secure a Special Event Permit from the Township and pay the regular field rental fees;
- request that the CVB's sponsorship include payment to the Township for the field use fees;
- discount the amount of the field use rental fees from the regular rate of $12,121 to an amount that factors actual measures, such as a discount on fees per out-of-region team. For example, if the tournament registers 150 teams from outside the greater Woodlands area, a $50 per team discount, or $7,500 in this example, would be applied to the field rental rate. If 242 teams registered, the $50 per team discount would equal the regular field rental rate and they would owe $0. The limit of discount would never be more than the value of the field rental fees.