After reading the “Everything is on the table” article, you might be interested in an article in the Nov. 2 issue of The Week magazine titled “Welfare for team owners.”
In part it states that communities, almost exclusively, do not benefit from new stadiums. In fact, they can become a hugely expensive albatross. Miami’s $650 million Marlin’s Park – opened in 2012 – will actually end up costing taxpayers more than $2 billion over the life of the bonds Miami-Dade County officials used to prop up a private construction deal.”
And, in 2014, “the struggling city of Detroit cut pensions for retirees by 4.5 percent at the same time it subsidized a new stadium for the Red Wings.”
Also, “Studies consistently find no discernible positive relationship between sports facilities construction and local economic development, income growth, or job creation.”
Orchard Park is a perfect example. The only things that developed there were private parking lots.
Billionaire owners most often put their own interests first. Witness the empty football stadiums in St. Louis, San Diego and Oakland. Those teams were lured away to cities foolish enough to bow to billionaire owners and their shiny new facilities. Taxpayers in those three cities are left saddled with $220 million in debt.
I have never been able to understand why a billionaire needs me to contribute from my Social Security check to fund his pet project.
Anne R. Tirone