It's actually 3 million a year now from the state, thanks to Pinellas lawmaker Jack Latvala. And we're talking about enough revenue to bond $300+ million in construction...a heck of a lot more than Hillsborough County could piece together right now. But still several hundred million short of the expected price of a stadium.“As you begin to piece together, well if you continue the six million a year the city’s been paying for debt service …. 2 million a year from the state …” Nurse trailed off. There’s also the county’s tourist tax kicked in for Tropicana Field. “That now gets you, perhaps, 40-50 percent the way toward a stadium.”
“What it really tells you is that you’ve got to find a way to say, the Rays are likely to have to pay a larger share than they have in mind and you’ve got to find someway to bring a developer in there so that whatever you build generates additional revenue that can go towards the stadium,” Nurse said.Good story. Read the rest here.
...“All sports teams have vastly overstated their economic impact,” Nurse said. So why not figure out just how much money the Rays make for the city?
Nurse said professional sports is not a good community investment, but that doesn’t mean give them the boot.
“Generally communities say this is something they want even if it doesn’t make economic sense,” he said.
But even if the city wants to keep the Rays, and they do, and even if fans want to keep them, they definitely do, it may not matter.
“I think it really depends upon what are either side of the bay willing to pay? Can you bring a third developer in to help facilitate part of the cost,” Nurse asked. “Are the Rays willing to accept the fact that they are located in a growing television market, which, no matter where you put a stadium, is going to be inconvenient for a third or 40 percent of the region?”
He’s not sure that they are.