Sunday, July 31, 2011

Tampa Learning Lesson St. Pete Already Learned

Much like St. Pete learned three years ago, Tampa and Hillsborough Co. are learning a tough lesson: voters hate it when public deals are negotiated in private.

Similarly to how the Rays' failed waterfront stadium deal went down, officials in Tampa are trying to wipe the egg off their face after agreeing to hand over $1+ million in incentives to a large mystery company "considering" a move out of town.

That business turned out to be PricewaterhouseCoopers, and it turns out it may not have ever been leaving the region in the first place.

My guess is, Hillsborough leaders will ask smarter questions the next time they're presented with a similar situation.

But the jury is still out as to whether leaders will act any different when it's a sports team - the Rays - asking, "please help subsidize our expansion or else we're leaving?"

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