U.S. Soccer has released its Book of Reports ahead of the 2023 AGM that will include the National Council Meeting on March 18.
Book of Reports: 2023 AGM
The meeting will take place in San Diego and be the first fully on-site event since the 2020 AGM in Nashville.
The proposed budget for fiscal year 2024 calls for an operating deficit of almost $9.47 million on record revenues of $172.68 million. The deficit for the fiscal year 2023 was budgeted at $30.67 million. The forecast deficit for fiscal year 2023 is now $45.96 million. (The federation's fiscal year begins April 1 and ends March 31.)
The deficit for the fiscal year 2022 was $25.18 million after being budgeted at more than $40.6 million and later projected a year ago to be surplus of $5.69 million. It is important to note that the legal settlement of $24 million with members of the U.S. women's national team was then charged to FY'22.
The payments of $22 million—minus about $6.8 million in attorneys’ fees and litigation costs—will be paid to the class members over more than three years via four interest-free installments. U.S. Soccer agreed to spend another $2 million on post-career goals and charitable efforts related to women's and girls soccer.
FY'23, which ends on March 31, marks the end of the 5-Year Operating Plan the federation's board adopted in 2017 and started in FY’19.
The idea was to invest much of its reserves in programming and get them down to $40 million at the end of FY'23. The 2023 Book of Reports does not include a projection on reserves. The 2022 Book of Reports included a section on "FY'23 Budget-Ending Cash & Investment Position," projecting a year-end cash and investment of about $102 million. (That amount would have been impacted by the USWNT settlement and increased deficit projected for FY'23 as well as 2022 changes in the market.)
Treasurer Lisa Carnoy's report outlines a new budget process that includes new methodology to prioritize essential initiatives and activities within the federation.
In January 2023, U.S. Soccer brought its commercial operation in-house, ending its long association with SUM, and entered into new media rights deals with Warner Bros. Discovery Sports and NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises. In a footnote, the federation projects net sponsorships/media revenues to be $69 million in FY'24.
Among the proposed by-law amendments to be voted upon by members in San Diego:
1. Paying the federation president an annual salary of $150,000 (it is now a voluntary position);
2. Making the vice president a non-voting position on the board;
3. Reducing the limits on terms of officers and board members.
In 2022, a move to make the president's position a paid one with a salary of $125,000 received the support of 59 percent of the membership. Amendments need 66.7 percent to pass.
Making the vice president a non-voting member of the board would end the impasse in governance reform that required the passage of sunset provisions.