Dayton's "make work" stadium plan

Dayton: "We need a people's stadium"


To work-vested construction workers visiting the state Capitol, Gov. Mark Dayton Tuesday pitched his vision for digging the state out of the building doldrums: a new Vikings stadium and spending on state buildings.

"We need a people's stadium. Not a Vikings stadium. Not somebody else's stadium. The people of Minnesota's stadium, the way the Metrodome was," Dayton said. "We need to do that again with the right kind of financing."

He mentioned funding it, at least in part, with "surcharges on tickets and souvenir and food and beverages" to pay off construction bonds with "not a dollar from general funds."

The governor has long expressed his interest in inking a deal to get the Vikings a new stadium. He has not put a specific proposal on the table. Nor have lawmakers who have long promised their ideas would be forthcoming.

Dayton said the new stadium would not only allow professional sports events but would also put construction workers back to work. The construction industry has been particularly hard hit by the economic downturn.

Comment: Image: People's Stadium, Budapest

I doubt that a new stadium can be built without raising taxes. Economists discredit the job creation argument:

Because local governments must balance their budgets, a stadium subsidy requires some combination of increases in taxes and utility fees and reductions in other expenditures, all of which depress employment. A rough rule of thumb is that $100,000 in higher taxes or reduced expenditures causes the loss of one job. If local government pays $180 million to finance the stadium the community will lose about 1,800 jobs, compared to the estimated 1,350 new jobs to build the stadium.

1 comment:

  1. Don't we already have a "People's Stadium" (how communistic!) called the "Metrodome"?

    I've also been estimating that each tax hike of $100k eliminates a job--nice to see a serious economist give that number a touch of credibility.


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