Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder, reportedly worth $2.3 billion, has said that he wants to build a new football stadium for his team by 2027. Del. Michael J. Webert, R-Marshall, says he would love for the NFL team to move from Maryland to Virginia… as long as taxpayers aren’t asked to share the cost.
Webert, whose district includes parts of three counties west of Washington, D.C., has introduced a bill that would prohibit the state, cities and counties from subsidizing the construction or operation of any stadium or other facilities used by a professional sports team, reports the Virginian-Pilot. The bill is not meant to ban public support for the facilities of minor league teams. Adds the Pilot:
The bill would also prohibit public funding for infrastructure improvements for a new pro sports stadium. Even if cities and counties don’t directly subsidize the cost of a sports stadium, they often provide millions of dollars to upgrade water and sewer lines and roads around sports facilities.
Government can continue to do so, but only if it collects “reasonable fees” from the pro team, according to the bill.
While Governor Terry McAuliffe has said the Redskins belong in the Old Dominion — 66% of season ticket holders hail from Virginia — Gov.-elect Ralph Northam has told the Pilot that he opposes taxpayer subsidies for Redskins, noting that the touted economic benefits from pro stadiums rarely materialize.
Bacon’s bottom line: If super-liberal D.C. or Maryland politicians can live with the hypocrisy of subsidizing a billionaire to keep the stadium in their jurisdiction, then let them. Virginia ticket holders might have to drive a bit farther than if the stadium were located in Northern Virginia, but that hasn’t stopped them from attending the existing stadium at FedEx field in Landover, Md. Virginia has far more pressing budgetary priorities.There are currently no comments highlighted.