In the Tampa Bay Times, the region's largest newspapers, it's all about pushing regional pride. In fact, the editorial board mentioned some variation of the word "region" six times in six paragraphs. That said, a new stadium may not get built without a regional approach - a regional tax, more specifically - so time to get talking now if the people want it to happen.
The Times also opined:
It took outside pressure for Foster to adjust his approach. He acknowledged to the Times editorial board this week that efforts by the county commissions in Pinellas and Hillsborough, and the St. Petersburg City Council, to break the stadium stalemate had an effect.This comes as no surprise since public pressure is all part of the blueprint so many other teams have used to get stadia built on someone else's dime. But it is nice to see Tampa and St. Pete cooperating (to a degree) rather than competing for this resource.
The editorial board of the Tampa Tribune wrote this morning that some outstanding questions need to be answered before plans for a new stadium progress too far...and they're right:
Will the team fare better in Tampa than in St. Petersburg, where attendance routinely ranks near the bottom despite winning teams? Will there be sufficient corporate support? Can the region financially support three major league sports franchises? Can a stadium be funded with minimal costs and limited risks to taxpayers?I'm not sure the answers to these questions. I have theories, but so does everyone.
The Trib also suggested the ever-popular rental car taxes, hotel taxes, and ticket surcharges could cover the public portion of a new stadium, as to avoid a significant burden on taxpayers. Except, not only could these revenue streams be used to pay for other local needs, but I've explained before why ticket surcharges are the last thing an MLB team wants to use to finance a stadium.
Unless Tampa finds a way to reinvent the wheel and finance a stadium in ways no other team has done before, you're probably looking at a real tax committment (not my words)....or another stadium in Pinellas County, where hotel taxes bring in more revenue.