Stadium Subsidies Debate

Stadium Subsidies, should tax payers pay?

The debate as to who pays for stadiums is always a hot topic in the sport management field. Who pays, and are the benefits of a new facility really worth it? I believe they are, however should be funded

The last week’s debate struck a chord with me, personally.  Tax payers should not have to pay for brand new stadiums, at all.  The amount of money that it brings to the community is true, however that’s a fact of life.  Individuals would spend that money anyways, regardless of sport.  They could see a movie, or go for a nice meal, or do whatever.  As we discussed in class, governance is in the middle of the triangle between policy, power and politics, and this is critical when examining tax payers this relates in a few ways.  With policies in place in the community these are the guidelines that force tax payers to pay what they do.   Power is the thing that owners have that can force the tax payers to pay. And finally, the politics that go on regarding stadium subsidies is crazy, and even more so when talking about whether tax payers should pay for it.

My Questions

1. How can only the fans that go to the games pay for the stadium?

2. If there is so much money to be lost on the surrounding area of the stadium, why don’t owners buy the property and take advantage of this, then use that money to fund their new stadium?

1. The owners need to pay for their stadiums in my opinion. If they don’t have the money to be able to afford a stadium for the team, then they should sell it to someone who does.  With all the money owners make on a yearly level, all owners can afford it, whether they admit it or not.

2. Owners have done this in Toronto, with Maple Leaf Square.  All of the surrounding area is owned by MLSE thus they are gaining all the revenue even though it may not be shown on the income statement of the team, the owners are still pocketing that money, and it should be something all owners should do to be able to capitalize on the game day experience.

Personally, I think the owners need to stop complaining to the city, and fund a stadium themselves. Generally speaking not all people in a city will use the facility, so why should they pay for it? I compare this to a restaurant where it is a publicly owned entity that people go there for entertainment/food.  Tax payers do not pay for that, and although restaurants is a lot cheaper, the owners of restaurants also have far less cash, so the comparison looms large.

I hope in the future we see more stadiums funded by owners, tax payers deserve better.

Baade,R., & Dye, R. (2012). Sport Stadiums and Area Development: A Critical Review. Lake Forrest College. Retrieved from: http://edq.sagepub.com/content/2/3/265.full.pdf+html

In class Debate for Stadium Subsidies (OCT 21)

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One Response to Stadium Subsidies Debate

  1. mloschiavo7 says:

    I agree that it is unfair for tax payers to help pay for new stadiums. Not everyone in the city goes to watch games yet their funds are being allocated towards building a new stadium which doesn’t exactly seem correct to me. The reason why I don’t think that is correct is because we don’t all use the building. I mean, our tax money gets used to help fix roads and build new infrastructure, which is essential. However, we all use roads and infrastructure on a daily basis so it is fair because we are paying tax on something we use or need. But for a stadium to use our money when they make money from ticket sales, merchandise, etc. That is unethical in my opinion. It’s essentially asking a bank for a loan, but not paying them back and the corporation gets all the profit from it.

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