Monday, August 27, 2007

Sports Stadium Financing 101

Apropos the big dust-up surrounding the Sonics, Henry says: "I also don't like cities competing against each other to hand ever-larger piles of tax payer dollars to very wealthy people. I'm not an economist, but no one can convince me this is not true."

On this issue, if not many others, it appears the economists and the public can reach a happy consensus. For a good primer on stadium financing, I recommend Neil DeMause's recent testimony to the House Oversight Committee. (Aside from being incredibly smart, Neil is also a great guy; everyone should check out his book, Field of Schemes.) Anyhow, in the testimony, Neil has a great quote from an actual economist--who, as TYI's own Nocioni once learned, is no wild-eyed lefty--who says, "If you want to inject money into the local economy, it would be better to drop it from a helicopter than [to] invest in a new ballpark.”

3 Comments:

Blogger Eddie Basden said...

If my time in New York taught me anything this summer, it's that the public financing of stadiums is horrendously dumb. Living in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn provided a up-close-and-personal look at the Atlantic Yards development and how much subsidies/public space Bloomberg and his cronies want. I also heard Dave Zirin speak on his most recent book tour. Good times had.

8:03 PM  
Anonymous Coach Skiles said...

Daley promised no public money for the Olympics - don't you trust him?

12:33 PM  
Blogger Hot Shit College Student said...

I'm not learned up on Chicago's 'lympic bid, but I imagine corporate sponsorships could cover new facilities. The City only requests that they be shit-ugly, and add to the Jetsons aesthetic of Millennium Park and Soldier Field.

2:03 PM  

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