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The State of Illinois will not pay for Wrigley Field renovations

Dec 2, 2010, 8:55 AM EDT

Wrigley Field

Good news: the Ricketts’ shameless campaign to get the State of Illinois to pay for renovations to Wrigley Field is dead in the water:

The Cubs’ plan to use 35 years’ worth of amusement-tax growth to finance a $200 million renovation of Wrigley Field — and back-stop the bonds with a 2 percent hotel tax — is dead, sources said Wednesday.

The setback for a plan the Cubs had hoped to ram through the state Legislature’s fall veto session has sent team officials back to the drawing board to search for alternatives that might include creating a tax-increment-financing (TIF) district around Wrigley.

Of course this doesn’t mean its over, as most of the linked article is spent discussing alternative ways the Cubs could get either the city or the state to pay for the upkeep to their building that they themselves should be paying. It’s all fairly non-critical too which is regrettable. I’m not saying that the news story should be an editorial against public financing of ballparks, but you’d think there would be at least one quote from a person who thinks it’s bad government to have taxpayers underwriting an anti-tax zealot billionaire’s vanity investment. And yes, such people do exist. If they didn’t the legislature wouldn’t be killing the current plan.

  1. shawon0meter - Dec 2, 2010 at 9:42 AM

    Would the tax payers be willing to finance the Cubs getting Cliff Lee?

  2. Jonny 5 - Dec 2, 2010 at 9:47 AM

    Yet we elect them. Over and over again….

    • Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Dec 2, 2010 at 10:43 AM

      Illinois Politricks.

  3. WhenMattStairsIsKing - Dec 2, 2010 at 2:19 PM

    I don’t care how Ricketts does this, so long as it doesn’t cost the fans anything more. We dish out enough for a ticket as it is.

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