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  • Sports Stadiums

    We've talked about overpaid athletes. What about sports stadiums?

    The owners of the Buffalo Bills & Sabers are asking for the government to pay $1.1 billion (not a typo) for a new NFL stadium and renovations to the NHL stadium. They are saying could move the team to Austin, Texas if their demands aren't met. As much as I like a local NFL team, they should pay for their own stadium. Maybe the real problem in professional sports is greedy owners.

    https://www.whec.com/sports/report-b...92736/?cat=565
    "For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings." Hosea 6:6

    "Theology can be an intellectual entertainment." Metropolitan Anthony Bloom

  • #2
    My initial reaction is that the sports fans need to pay up.

    On the other hand, major sports events bring in lots of revenue for hotels, restaurants, local businesses, etc.

    I don't think the federal government should pay for these, but the local or municipal district in which they will be built should front the money IF they are convinced they will bring in offset revenue.

    Personally, I don't do sports arenas.
    The first to state his case seems right until another comes and cross-examines him.

    Comment


    • #3
      As for the NFL threatening to move to Austin --- they deserve Austin.
      The first to state his case seems right until another comes and cross-examines him.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Thoughtful Monk View Post
        We've talked about overpaid athletes. What about sports stadiums?

        The owners of the Buffalo Bills & Sabers are asking for the government to pay $1.1 billion (not a typo) for a new NFL stadium and renovations to the NHL stadium. They are saying could move the team to Austin, Texas if their demands aren't met. As much as I like a local NFL team, they should pay for their own stadium. Maybe the real problem in professional sports is greedy owners.

        https://www.whec.com/sports/report-b...92736/?cat=565
        As I recently mentioned:


        Nobody is forced to support them with the exception of helping to fund new stadiums -- and that needs to stop! It was bad enough when a team abandoned a stadium after 40-50 years (and there are still a few iconic stadiums still out there), but now a team starts grumbling about a new stadium after a little over a decade.


        The excuse for having tax payer foot the bill is all of the revenue a team will bring in. But IIRC there were a number of studies awhile back that found that having a professional sports team does not bring in a bunch of revenue. That the expenses offset any gain. So the taxpayers are getting shafted so that the team can rake in the money and pay those exorbitant salaries.

        So IMHBAO when a sports team threatens to move if the city doesn't build yet another stadium for them my advice is to say goodbye.

        I'm always still in trouble again

        "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
        "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
        "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post
          My initial reaction is that the sports fans need to pay up.

          On the other hand, major sports events bring in lots of revenue for hotels, restaurants, local businesses, etc.

          I don't think the federal government should pay for these, but the local or municipal district in which they will be built should front the money IF they are convinced they will bring in offset revenue.

          Personally, I don't do sports arenas.
          Not really. With the exception of championship games and playoffs almost everyone in the stands is from the area so the hotels see very little revenue.

          After paying an arm and a leg for tickets, parking and concessions (most teams charge $5 or more just for one hot dog), virtually nobody stops at a restaurant after the game (except maybe a drive through of a fast food place), with most heading straight home.

          Ask the stores near a stadium how much money they make when there is a game going on. The fans aren't stopping in that flower shop, boutique, or repair shop, and their regular customers don't want to fight traffic...

          And then there is the expense off crowd control. Police having to direct traffic and such.

          Taxpayers should not be put on the hook for a new stadium every other decade.

          I'm always still in trouble again

          "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
          "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
          "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
            Not really. With the exception of championship games and playoffs almost everyone in the stands is from the area so the hotels see very little revenue.

            After paying an arm and a leg for tickets, parking and concessions (most teams charge $5 or more just for one hot dog), virtually nobody stops at a restaurant after the game (except maybe a drive through of a fast food place), with most heading straight home.

            Ask the stores near a stadium how much money they make when there is a game going on. The fans aren't stopping in that flower shop, boutique, or repair shop, and their regular customers don't want to fight traffic...

            And then there is the expense off crowd control. Police having to direct traffic and such.

            Taxpayers should not be put on the hook for a new stadium every other decade.
            I was trying to be open-minded on this, but you, my brother, have helped me slam it shut.

            Good point - only if significant revenue would be brought into the municipality or region from the outside might it make sense. Apparently, that's not the case.

            So, back to --- let the sports fans pay for their cathedrals!
            The first to state his case seems right until another comes and cross-examines him.

            Comment


            • #7
              The local government can decide to up the money. But if I were them, I would demand a percentage of the profit in return, forever.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
                Not really. With the exception of championship games and playoffs almost everyone in the stands is from the area so the hotels see very little revenue.

                After paying an arm and a leg for tickets, parking and concessions (most teams charge $5 or more just for one hot dog), virtually nobody stops at a restaurant after the game (except maybe a drive through of a fast food place), with most heading straight home.

                Ask the stores near a stadium how much money they make when there is a game going on. The fans aren't stopping in that flower shop, boutique, or repair shop, and their regular customers don't want to fight traffic...

                And then there is the expense off crowd control. Police having to direct traffic and such.

                Taxpayers should not be put on the hook for a new stadium every other decade.
                Ball games aren't the only thing that stadiums do. Recently, my church men's group went to the Promise Keepers event at the AT&T Stadium in Dallas. There were people from all over the country. Our church alone rented 8 rooms. And check in time at the hotel was crazy with so many in town for the event. We ate at a local restaurant the first evening and then the next morning. Concerts, commonly have lots of hotel stayers because they usually end late at night and people inbibe too much and ubering or taxing to a local hotel is much safer.
                "What has the Church gained if it is popular, but there is no conviction, no repentance, no power?" - A.W. Tozer

                "... there are two parties in Washington, the stupid party and the evil party, who occasionally get together and do something both stupid and evil, and this is called bipartisanship." - Everett Dirksen

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Littlejoe View Post

                  Ball games aren't the only thing that stadiums do. Recently, my church men's group went to the Promise Keepers event at the AT&T Stadium in Dallas. There were people from all over the country. Our church alone rented 8 rooms. And check in time at the hotel was crazy with so many in town for the event. We ate at a local restaurant the first evening and then the next morning. Concerts, commonly have lots of hotel stayers because they usually end late at night and people inbibe too much and ubering or taxing to a local hotel is much safer.
                  As I said, except for rare events like this or a championship game, such events are very rare.

                  Here in Atlanta, a couple of stadiums ago, they used to hold concerts in Fulton County Stadium but the damage to the grass tended to offset whatever profit they made.

                  I'm always still in trouble again

                  "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
                  "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
                  "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Thoughtful Monk View Post
                    We've talked about overpaid athletes. What about sports stadiums?

                    The owners of the Buffalo Bills & Sabers are asking for the government to pay $1.1 billion (not a typo) for a new NFL stadium and renovations to the NHL stadium. They are saying could move the team to Austin, Texas if their demands aren't met. As much as I like a local NFL team, they should pay for their own stadium. Maybe the real problem in professional sports is greedy owners.

                    https://www.whec.com/sports/report-b...92736/?cat=565
                    I say the team should put up or shut up and pay fo their own stadium instead of demanding taxpayers subsidize them.

                    Taxpayer funded stadiums never end up as a good deal and are a terrible public investment.


                    https://www.cato.org/blog/pandemic-m...al-taxpayers-0

                    Pandemic Makes Municipal Stadiums an Even Worse Deal for Taxpayers
                    By David Boaz


                    Cities across the country are struggling to make their debt payments on municipal stadiums in an era of canceled events, report Sebastian Pellejero and Heather Gillers in the Wall Street Journal:

                    Public officials have borrowed billions of dollars to build stadiums for major teams. Since 2000, more than 40% of almost $17 billion in tax‐​exempt municipal bonds sold to finance major‐​league stadiums were backed by levies on hotels and rental cars—making tourism taxes the predominant means of public stadium finance, according to the Brookings Institution.
                    The borrowers envisioned the sports facilities as a form of economic development that would attract fans from near and far, raising cities’ national profile and boosting their revenue beyond what was needed to pay back the bonds. The pandemic has turned that calculus on its head, crushing tourism proceeds and turning stadiums into a strain on city budgets.

                    But that calculus was never very sound, as I’ve written here before. Academic studies have consistently found few if any economic benefits of subsidies for stadiums, arenas, convention centers, and the like.

                    Several Cato studies over the years have looked at the absurd economic claims of stadium advocates. In “Sports Pork: The Costly Relationship between Major League Sports and Government,” Raymond Keating finds:

                    The lone beneficiaries of sports subsidies are team owners and players. The existence of what economists call the “substitution effect” (in terms of the stadium game, leisure dollars will be spent one way or another whether a stadium exists or not), the dubiousness of the Keynesian multiplier, the offsetting impact of a negative multiplier, the inefficiency of government, and the negatives of higher taxes all argue against government sports subsidies. Indeed, the results of studies on changes in the economy resulting from the presence of stadiums, arenas, and sports teams show no positive economic impact from professional sports – or a possible negative effect.

                    In Regulation magazine (.pdf), Dennis Coates and Brad Humphreys found that the economic literature on stadium subsidies comes to consistent conclusions:

                    The evidence suggests that attracting a professional sports franchise to a city and building that franchise a new stadium or arena will have no effect on the growth rate of real per capita income and may reduce the level of real per capita income in that city.

                    And in “Caught Stealing: Debunking the Economic Case for D.C. Baseball,” Coates and Humphreys looked specifically at the economics of the new baseball stadium in Washington, D.C., and found similar results:

                    Our conclusion, and that of nearly all academic economists studying this issue, is that professional sports generally have little, if any, positive effect on a city’s economy. The net economic impact of professional sports in Washington, D.C., and the 36 other cities that hosted professional sports teams over nearly 30 years, was a reduction in real per capita income over the entire metropolitan area.

                    In an updated study from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, Coates finds similar results:
                    • Professional sports can have some impact on the economy. Looking at all the sports variables, including presence of franchises, arrival and departure of clubs in a metropolitan area, and stadium and arena construction, the study finds that the presence of a franchise is a statistically significant factor in explaining personal income per capita, wage and salary disbursements, and wages per job.
                    • But this impact tends to be negative. Individual coefficients, such as stadium or arena construction, sometimes have no impact, but frequently indicate harmful effects of sports on per capita income, wage and salary disbursements, and wages per job.
                    Michael Farren of Mercatus summed up, “Furthermore, peer‐​reviewed academic research consistently shows that public financing for professional sports stadiums is a poor way to spur economic development or accomplish ‘downtown revitalization.’ ”

                    The pandemic and the event cancellations it has generated have seriously disrupted the financial calculations that cities made in building stadiums at taxpayers’ expense. But they were never a good bargain.

                    https://reason.com/video/2015/03/17/...c-investmen-2/


                    https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/o...d-stadium-scam

                    Each year, a different city hosts the Super Bowl, attracting people from all over the country and beyond to attend the most-watched football game of the year.

                    This year, the game will take place at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. It marks the first time in NFL history that the Super Bowl will take place at the home stadium for one of the teams. A game of this magnitude taking place at Raymond James Stadium, however, is another unfortunate reminder for the public: Taxpayers have been getting screwed on NFL stadium deals for years.

                    Built in 1998, Raymond James Stadium cost $168.5 million to construct, and taxpayers financed it. The funding came from a 30-year, half-cent sales tax approved by Hillsborough County, Florida, voters in 1996. The purpose of the tax was to fund local infrastructure, education, and law enforcement, as well as build the new stadium. Just imagine how much nicer the roads could look in the area if that $168.5 million went to fixing potholes instead of funding corporate welfare.

                    It’s unfortunate that the community not only funded the construction of a football stadium but also that it did so with such a regressive tax. While people in the working class may help pay for the stadium every time they buy school supplies, candy, batteries, sporting goods, or whatever else, they don't share in the benefits of this stadium.

                    Stadiums don’t boost economic growth. In fact, they take money that people would spend at other businesses in the community and give it to businesses owned by millionaires and billionaires. They’re a rip-off, and there is a myriad of studies and articles confirming that. A 2017 poll of economists by the University of Chicago found that only 2% of economists disagreed with this statement: “Providing state and local subsidies to build stadiums for professional sports teams is likely to cost the relevant taxpayers more than any local economic benefits that are generated.”

                    Stadiums fail to deliver on the number of jobs promised, and the jobs they create tend to be low-paying and part-time positions. In a typical year, there could be as few as 10 games at an NFL stadium: two in the preseason and eight in the regular season. Sure, there are concerts and special events at other times, but most stadiums sit vacant for the majority of the year.

                    The coronavirus pandemic has made the situation even worse. In 2020, there was no Minor League Baseball season. As a result, many taxpayer-funded stadiums were vacant nearly all summer. There was also no attendance at most Major League Baseball games, although limited attendance was allowed at some postseason games. And the NFL teams that had people in attendance this season were limited to about 20% to 25% capacity. Since the Super Bowl will take place in Florida, it can have 22,000 fans in attendance. That’s better for the community than zero, but limited attendance this season has made stadiums even less worthwhile than anticipated. Surely when voters approved that sales-tax hike they weren’t thinking that there could be NFL games with fewer than 25,000 attendees.

                    Tampa isn’t unique in having a taxpayer-funded NFL stadium, either. From 1997 to 2017, taxpayers spent nearly $7 billion building, maintaining, and repairing NFL stadiums alone, according to ESPN. That happened despite massive profits for the league. As of 2015, the average new stadium received $238 million in public funding despite teams and owners having enough money to pay for them. Following the 2019 NFL season, 32 NFL teams split about $9.5 billion in revenue sharing — about $296 million per team, according to Sportico.

                    If anything positive comes out of this pandemic, then hopefully it's that people realize these stadiums are bad investments. If the owners of professional sports teams want stadiums, they can pay for them by themselves. Taxpayers usually don’t fund the venues of other businesses, so why should these be any different?

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