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Your ballpark tax dollars at work

Nov 30, 2009, 4:20 PM EDT

For every pie in the sky ballpark deal floating around out there, there’s always a story like this later:

Funding to pay off debt on Great American Ball Park, the home of the
Cincinnati Reds, and Paul Brown Stadium, the home of the Cincinnati
Bengals, is expected to be $14 million short next year, so Hamilton
County officials will discuss tonight various ways to make up the
shortfall . . . One possibility is to raise
property taxes to pre-1995 levels.

Almost every city has a newish park now, but for the couple who don’t, remember this: baseball owners will take whatever money they can from you when times are flush, and then they’ll take whatever they need from you when times are tight.  It’s OK to enjoy their product, but just like we expect any other business to pay for its factory, one would think that we would expect the baseball business to pay for its places of work as well.

  1. smsetnor - Nov 30, 2009 at 4:50 PM

    With all of the mouth breathers who post about the Yankees and Red Sox and unjest All-Star and gold glove voting, no one ever comments articles like this. I am all about some public funding when it comes to arenas used for the public and to be owned by the public, but the baseball stadium thing is getting silly.

  2. YankeesfanLen - Nov 30, 2009 at 5:20 PM

    “Raise property taxes to pre-1995 levels”???????????The residents of New Jersey would faint and the politicians would all jump off the Fair Lawn Ave. bridge and would never be found in the Passaic river.

  3. JayT - Nov 30, 2009 at 7:07 PM

    It’s actually a pretty normal practice for a city to build a factory to try and entice a company to move there.

  4. Craig Calcaterra - Nov 30, 2009 at 7:42 PM

    I’ve heard of providing big tax breaks, but actually paying for and constructing the whole factory?

  5. GimmeSomeSteel - Nov 30, 2009 at 9:54 PM

    I live in Hamilton County (Cincinnati). Part of the problem is that the County Commission which forced the bond issue and sales tax increase for the stadiums was all Republican. The current Commission is controlled by the Democrats. Therefore, it’s the other guy’s fault.
    The current shortfall, which anyone with a working brain could have predicted when the stadiums were authorized, is now a political football, with no one willing to do what’s needed to resolve the financial issue. At the time of the sales tax increase, the politicians put in a 2.5% property tax reduction as an “offset”. The issue is whether to remove the offset. I don’t see an alternative, but politicians being a different and lower species, they’ll try to convince the voters that it’s only “temporary”.

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