Tags: Money | Goodell | LA | NFL | Stadium | Taxpayers

Taxpayers Will Cover Infrastructure Costs of Inglewood Stadium

Friday, 15 January 2016 03:03 PM Current | Bio | Archive

One only has to glance at the long line of NFL owners flying to the league’s annual meeting in their private jets to know for a fact that welfare handouts only serve to create a culture of dependency.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, the face of one–percenter entitlement, solemnly announced at the gathering that stadiums in St. Louis, San Diego and Oakland are “inadequate and unsatisfactory.”

If that’s the case why don’t the billionaires start remodeling?

The Benham brothers could use the work.

Unfortunately NFL owners suffer from entitlement ennui. Owners expect government to pile on inducements until the total satisfies a billionaire. Determining a satisfactory amount is the problem.

Roose Bolton, in Game of Thrones, knew the dowry for marrying one of Walder Frey’s daughters would be her weight in silver. Since fat was more valuable than fair, he choose the orca–sized Walda.

But how many tax dollars attract a fat–and–happy NFL owner?

The uncertainly had St. Louis in a tizzy.

All signs pointed to the city having to return the NFL team it borrowed from LA 22 years ago. And Lord Goodell ruled Edward Jones Dome was too ramshackle for a team with a 7–10 record.

Bringing up another point: The dome has been around two years less than the team and yet it’s now unfit? I’m still wearing a sweatshirt that’s over 20 years old.

And why would the Ram’s owner leave when his con is working so well? St. Louis politicians are gullible marks. It wouldn’t have been any easier if the team were negotiating with John Kerry.

Like the teenager who just has to have the muscle car and focuses on keeping the monthly payment low — instead of getting a low price for the car — St. Louis politicians negotiated a deal for their stadium that has taxpayers still making payments on the dome six years after the Rams’ vamoose!

Just like having one out–of–wedlock child only makes it easier to have a second, St. Louis decided one tenantless stadium shouldn’t stop them from building another.

The city offered the Rams a new $1 billion riverfront abode for the low, low discount price of $600 million, while taxpayers paid the rest. Of course that was only the opening bid. I’m sure with just a little negotiation Rams ownership could have persuaded the city to pay reparations, too.

Yet the Rams didn’t take the deal.

Ownership decided to return to California and take an offer that ostensibly will cost the team more money. The California deal locates a new stadium in Inglewood, a suburb of Los Angeles.

Instead of footing 40 percent of the bill, as St. Louis offered, the developer promises: “no public dollars, no taxpayer dollars [will be] used for this project. The entire project has been privately capitalized and is being privately funded."

The LA Times reports that’s not entirely true, as the owners will be paid approximately $60 million for “the costs of roadwork, utility work and public parks on the nearly 300-acre site.”

Lest you think that sounds only fair, keep in mind when your house was built the developer paid local government for the cost of roadwork, utility work, and other amenities through proffers or impact fees.

You reimbursed the builder when those costs were added to the price of your home.

Inglewood taxpayers are going to be paying for the roads and utilities around their home and the Rams’ home, too.

The LA stadium is slightly larger, 70,000 seats versus 64,000, with a much larger media market, but I still wonder if there is more subsidy to this deal than meets the eye.

It’s difficult to imagine one of these welfare moguls leaving $400 million on the table, even if it is a stone’s throw from Ferguson.

ABC News reports St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay is angry he couldn’t give away hundreds of millions of tax dollars to a billionaire. (It reminds me of the time my wife sent $5 to Donald Trump.)

Slay promised his Hail Mary stadium plan would “revitalize” that area of the city, while presumably “devitalizing” the neighborhood near the abandoned dome. Now he complains, “I'm so frustrated and disappointed with the NFL.”

Moving for a smaller bribe is so uncommon among NFL teams that I would like to offer the Rams an opportunity to be even more singular. Every team has a fight song, but how about a flight song? (Sung to “California Here I Come”):

"California, here we come
Right back were we started from.
We left you, bereft you long time ago
Now phooey, St. Louie, your money’s too slow.
That big, new field said, 'Don't be late!' 
That's why we can hardly wait.
Open up your golden gate
California here we come!"

Michael R. Shannon is a commentator, researcher (for the League of American Voters), and an award-winning political and advertising consultant with nationwide and international experience. He is author of "Conservative Christian’s Guidebook for Living in Secular Times (Now with added humor!)." Read more of Michael Shannon's reports — Go Here Now.


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One only has to glance at the long line of NFL owners flying to the league’s annual meeting in their private jets to know for a fact that welfare handouts only serve to create a culture of dependency.
Goodell, LA, NFL, Stadium, Taxpayers
Friday, 15 January 2016 03:03 PM
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