OHSAA director Doug Ute said in a statement the move was necessary to establish a more sustainable, consistent source of revenue for the organization after it suffered heavy losses over the past year and a half because o the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We traditionally have relied on tournament ticket sales for about 80 percent of our revenue,” Ute said. “That financial model has not been sustainable, and the COVID-19 pandemic has certainly not helped.
“Levying membership dues will give us a steady line of income since many of our other lines are variable, and it will help us build a new, more sustainable revenue model. That model, which will help ensure our long-term sustainability, will be a combination of a wider variety of income streams – including these dues – and continued better management of our expenses.”
In a memo sent to member schools, the OHSAA said its revenue had been trending in the wrong direction since 2014, including net losses in 2018 and ’19 before the pandemic caused spring sports and multiple winter championships to be canceled in the first half of 2020.