MARTINEZ (KCBS)— Many Bay Area high-school athletic programs are feeling the pinch of declining revenue, including one in Contra Costa County that is trying to spread the wealth with dwindling dollars.

Alhambra High School is doing everything it can to keep sports afloat, but mandatory student fees are no longer allowed in high-school sports, according to the school’s Athletic Director Pat Ertola.

He said parents are now asked to donate a minimum of $150 so a student athlete can play one sport. Ertola said some of the neighboring districts are asking for double that amount in donations.

Alhambra caps the donation at $300. Ertola said traditionally high school fans have paid to see football and basketball games, but he thinks it may be time to expand that.

“Why does a volleyball parent not have to pay to watch their kid play? I don’t necessarily like it. I’d prefer not to charge any of them, but I think there’s certain fairness to that,” Ertola said.

He said donations are down as budget cuts sweep through the athletic department and that his department is just now starting to climb out of a financial hole from last year.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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