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Osorojo
08-28-2010, 04:20 PM
Across the U.S. multi-million dollar sports venues are being built with taxpayers' money, usually without a vote to obtain the consent of the taxpayers. This practice is not restricted to professional sports stadiums, or even to state colleges.
For example, the dome where Syracuse University (a private university) plays its home basketball and football games was partly financed with taxes through the New York State Dormitory Authority (??!).
Speculation abounds about the addition of hockey programs at DI colleges. Stadiums with hockey rinks cost a whole lot of money to build. The crash of 2008 remains unresolved, and cries for spending cuts and tax cuts resound across our land. Do plans currently exist to build new college hockey arenas with public taxes?

[BTW: The fact that you, like me, are ignorant of any such a plan doesn't mean diddly. Instead of proclaiming your ignorance is proof of the innocence of all college hockey schools [and wannabe college hockey schools] please wait long enough for proof of the contrary to be produced, if such proof exists.

Slap Shot
08-28-2010, 04:25 PM
http://www.urbandigs.com/nakedgun.gif

Puck Swami
08-28-2010, 04:28 PM
Hockey facilities are rarely used for just college hockey - they can hold community events, recreation facilities. conventions, meetings, concerts and other sports and shows. Even the simplest rinks can support their operating costs through public skating, figure skating, ice rental, and youth/adult hockey leagues.

In other words, rinks help to can pay for themselves with uses beyond just 20-25 home games per year. Lots of these buildings can run 24 hours a day generating revenue.

I can think of very few arenas built that were poor investments, with tax dollars or not.

GoNU5
08-28-2010, 04:30 PM
Across the U.S. multi-million dollar sports venues are being built with taxpayers' money, usually without a vote to obtain the consent of the taxpayers. This practice is not restricted to professional sports stadiums, or even to state colleges.
For example, the dome where Syracuse University (a private university) plays its home basketball and football games was partly financed with taxes through the New York State Dormitory Authority (??!).
Speculation abounds about the addition of hockey programs at DI colleges. Stadiums with hockey rinks cost a whole lot of money to build. The crash of 2008 remains unresolved, and cries for spending cuts and tax cuts resound across our land. Do plans currently exist to build new college hockey arenas with public taxes?

[BTW: The fact that you, like me, are ignorant of any such a plan doesn't mean diddly. Instead of proclaiming your ignorance is proof of the innocence of all college hockey schools [and wannabe college hockey schools] please wait long enough for proof of the contrary to be produced, if such proof exists.

Well according to the wiki page for the Carrier Dome, there was a grant given by the state to help the Governor's re-election campaign. Sports stadiums are just another spending item people use to gain political support in an area around where the project is being made.

Secondly, while some call for cutting taxes, there's also a lot of people calling for increased spending to combat the recession, and thus create jobs, Keynesian economics and all, as it did help in the Great Depression.

Thirdly, professional sports in general in the U.S is socialist (the worst teams get the best draft picks, and struggling teams get money that's taken from richest teams), college sports are the most capitalistic of any sporting institution in the U.S.

Finally, I'm not sure what you're trying to achieve by making this thread. I'm sure state money is being given to all sorts of building projects, roads, bridges, and most likely some money is going to sporting facilities, because they create jobs in an area and help bring money to an area.

EDIT- and as Puck Swami said, these facilities often use more than just college sports, there's tons of other events that occur there, and generate plenty of permanent jobs and revenue for the area.

moose97
08-28-2010, 04:47 PM
The two new rinks opening later this year (Bemidji's Regional Event Center in about a month and a half and Duluth's Amsoil Arena in late December) are both paid for with public taxes, but can draw their genesis to pre-2008 economic melt-down (both got state bonding money in April 2008 - Bemidji $20 million and Duluth IIRC, $40 million. In addition, both rinks will have their local share paid for with some form of sales tax). Also, both are true multi-purpose buildings - the DECC/Amsoil Rink an extension of an already impressive facility (http://www.decc.org/), and the BREC a true arena/convention center in one, and already has concerts, comedy shows, meetings, weddings, a rodeo and more (http://www.bemidjipioneer.com/event/article/id/100021219/) booked in the first 6 months of operation.

AMC
08-28-2010, 05:09 PM
I think the real issue here is your definition of 'socialism.'

Government spending does not necessarily equate to socialism. Additionally, the lack of a democratic vote for spending does not mean something is socialism. Truly socialist policies can even be (HUUUUUUGE GASP!) enacted via a democratic vote.

I think what you mean to say is "Unpopular Government Spending and Hockey."

Osorojo
08-28-2010, 05:15 PM
NU: If you dig deeper I believe you'll find that the Syracuse Dome tax funding resulted from a quid pro quo deal between upstate Republicans who voted to fund the Javits Conference Center in NYC in return for downstate Democrats' votes for Dome funding.

The guy who wrote the new book about "socialized sports," specifically the use of public funds to subsidize private enterprises (sports facilities), claims that numerous economic studies indicate a net economic loss to taxpayers who are obliged to contribute to the construction of professional sports venues in their immediate area. If true, it's quite unlikely that state taxpayers would realize any net economic benefit from paying for a college hockey arena in some other part of the state.

Why trouble to learn how our taxes are spent, and the justification for this spending? Ask a conservative.

Dirty
08-28-2010, 05:19 PM
Much to the dismay of 85% of it's residents, North Dakota is building a new 3500 seat hockey arena for the women's team that is being funded with all the oil money from the western part of the state. It is so utterly opposed that you can not purchase a pitchfork in the state as all the stores are sold out.

SteveF
08-28-2010, 06:20 PM
I think the real issue here is your definition of 'socialism.'

Government spending does not necessarily equate to socialism. Additionally, the lack of a democratic vote for spending does not mean something is socialism. Truly socialist policies can even be (HUUUUUUGE GASP!) enacted via a democratic vote.

I think what you mean to say is "Unpopular Government Spending and Hockey."

thanks to sean hannity, no one knows what socialism is anymore

thebrain
08-29-2010, 12:42 AM
A sales tax in Hennipen(Minnesota) County is paying for Target Field, the new home of the Minnesota Twins(It's outdoor baseball in Minnesota!!) They've sold out just about every game at around 40,000 people and are on pace to bring in over three million people to the park. What else will bring three million people with money in their wallets, ready to spend, to Downtown Minneapolis? Not the Timberwolves, a theater, an art gallery and so forth.

I see it like this, it's not the facility that needs to make money, it's the businesses around the facility that are making money, therefore creating jobs, paying taxes, and creating a quality of life that you probably wouldn't have.

burd
08-29-2010, 06:41 AM
The guy who wrote the new book about "socialized sports," specifically the use of public funds to subsidize private enterprises (sports facilities), claims that numerous economic studies indicate a net economic loss to taxpayers who are obliged to contribute to the construction of professional sports venues in their immediate area. If true, it's quite unlikely that state taxpayers would realize any net economic benefit from paying for a college hockey arena in some other part of the state.

Why trouble to learn how our taxes are spent, and the justification for this spending? Ask a conservative.

What guy? What new book? What studies? Cite your sources and explain them. Just pointing and crying "socialism!" is a tired old trick that offers nothing. Each case is different and should live or die on its own merits.

Simpler yet, just go get yourself a Ralph.

Fighting Sioux 23
08-29-2010, 09:08 AM
What guy? What new book? What studies? Cite your sources and explain them. Just pointing and crying "socialism!" is a tired old trick that offers nothing. Each case is different and should live or die on its own merits.

Simpler yet, just go get yourself a Ralph.

No kidding.

So, there's this guy, who also wrote a new book, that has EVEN MORE studies (and by the way, they were 38% better studies than that other guy) who found just the exact opposite of what osorojo is claiming.

:rolleyes:

IrishHockeyFan
08-29-2010, 10:22 AM
While coming to the defense of what certain posters put out is galling at times, Osorojo makes a valid point. One study published by the Cato Institute (http://www.cato.org/pubs/regulation/regv23n2/coates.pdf) makes the claim that "Unlike most studies commissioned by stadium advocates, the consensus in the academic literature has been that the sports environment has no measurable effect on the level of real income in metropolitan areas."

This study is just one of many I have read, and even a cursory search of the internet will show many, many such articles and studies, from many of the leading economic think tanks, that show sports stadiums (and even events at existing facilities like race tracks or tennis centers) do little or nothing to add to the economics of any particular city. Often the studies that purport to show some positive impact are done by or for the very people seeking to see public funding used for such projects, like owners of baseball teams.

All of the credible studies and evidence I have seen for years now supports the idea that public funding for expensive sporting venues is a losing proposition as far as recouping the money spent in tangible economic benefit.

Sterling Cooper
08-29-2010, 01:29 PM
I don't think sports subsidies are socialistic in the least. While their importance relative to academic concerns can be debated in the context of public universities, those institutions are funded to varying degrees by state government. While I would argue that it's more important for the state to fund a new physics lab than a hockey arena, both are legitimate uses for public funding.

With regards to professional sports, they've always struck me as much more similar to what might be referred to as "banana republic capitalism" "crony capitalism" or, in my neck of the woods, "Da Chicago Way" in that they use publicly raised funds to subsidize and benefit the narrow private interests of a select group of wealthy and politically connected individuals at the expense of other uses for the funds that might provide a more general good such as education, public transit and so on.

Puck Swami
08-29-2010, 01:48 PM
All of the credible studies and evidence I have seen for years now supports the idea that public funding for expensive sporting venues is a losing proposition as far as recouping the money spent in tangible economic benefit.

It depends what you build and where you build it and how many days a year it gets used. I can say with certainty that the building of Coors Field in what was once Denver's skid row has totally rejuvenated the whole neighborhood of Lower Downtown, which is now full of restaurants, condos, clubs, galleries, bars and offices that would never have been built were it not for the ballpark making the neighborhood safe and desirable. The 80 baseball game days a year put a lot of money into the local area that would probably have been spent elsewhere.

Ask the city of Barcelona if all the Olympic investment was worth it. The Olympics was the "mother of all deadlines" for the city to rebuild it's waterfront and beach, put in a new airport and hotels and redo the highways, and built many new sports facilities that remain in use today. The city is now a major European tourist destination, and it wasn't before the 1992 Olympics. Some cities haven't done as well with their Olympic investment, but for others, it was certainly worth it.

IrishHockeyFan
08-29-2010, 02:16 PM
The 80 baseball game days a year put a lot of money into the local area that would probably have been spent elsewhere.



Except "elsewhere" is more likely the Denver area anyway. If folks have disposable income, they'll dispose of it. The idea that sports and stadiums bolster the local economy and raise real per capita income is what I (and most economists) say is is dispute. Sure folks will go to the Coors Field area and spend money (creating jobs in the vicinity that are virtually all of the low playing/no benefit variety), but if Denver and the state didn't give away 100s of millions of dollars so the Rockies owners had the place, the people who spend money in the Coors Field part of Denver would spend it on some other form of local entertainment.

Osorojo
08-29-2010, 03:15 PM
What guy? What new book? What studies? Cite your sources and explain them. Just pointing and crying "socialism!" is a tired old trick that offers nothing. Each case is different and should live or die on its own merits.

Simpler yet, just go get yourself a Ralph.

I did not "point" and I did not "cry;" I asked a question and confessed my own ignorance. Scroll up and see. Calm down.

Most of the research devoted to public funding of sports arenas is devoted to professional sports, although this issue is not restricted to pro stadiums. Those unaware that the NHL is becoming the dog and DI college hockey is becoming the tail haven't been paying attention, or their team has not lost recruits or players to NHL influence.

The NHL is a profit-seeking organization. It recognizes the great financial advantages of having DI colleges screen and develop hockey talent rather than pro hockey paying the room and board, travel, equipment, staff, salaries and facility construction/operation costs inherent in supporting major junior hockey.

The semi-satiric suggestion to combine DI college hockey and major junior hockey was greeted with contempt and howls of outrage. It wasn't a fish who discovered water. College hockey zealots wouldn't recognize the elements of change if they bit them in the arse. Don't look now, but . . .

Dirty
08-29-2010, 04:19 PM
Don't look now, but . . .

Osorojo is rambling on like Grandpa Simpson.

Onion Man
08-29-2010, 05:03 PM
Public money for sports stadiums (private schools) is normally received for infrastructure purposes (roads, septic, etc). This is not 'socialism' or 'unusual'.

As a matter of fact, large companies building new offices such as IBM or Microsoft also receive money for infrastructure, too. Hardly socialism in either case.

moose97
08-29-2010, 05:05 PM
Except "elsewhere" is more likely the Denver area anyway. If folks have disposable income, they'll dispose of it. The idea that sports and stadiums bolster the local economy and raise real per capita income is what I (and most economists) say is is dispute. Sure folks will go to the Coors Field area and spend money (creating jobs in the vicinity that are virtually all of the low playing/no benefit variety), but if Denver and the state didn't give away 100s of millions of dollars so the Rockies owners had the place, the people who spend money in the Coors Field part of Denver would spend it on some other form of local entertainment.

In this case (and most pro sports argments), I agree. If I lived in Denver pre-Rockies, I was likely looking to spend some money doing something like going to clubs, movies, museums, bowling, other pro sports or maybe minor league sports, etc. Now, rather than do that, I would be spending it on baseball.

If this is the debate we want to have, this thread should be moved to the Cafe. However, I look at it from the Bemidji (and for that matter, BSU) viewpoint. The new rink here will draw people into the city that would otherwise have not come. They would have gone to the other casinos in neighboring communities (the closest ~15 miles away, with most a 45 minute drive) for concerts. Plus conventions that will draw folks into town,, where previously they would not even come to town for lack of a viable facility (not to mention the Bemidjians that leave town to go to such events, and no longer will have to do so). As for BSU, especially with the move to the WCHA, the new rink represents an opportunity to maximize revenue from visiting schools - something that simply wasn't possible in the CHA, where the visiting schools were in Alabama, Pennsylvania and New York.