Out of Control Policy Blog

The real sucker bet in sports. . . a new publicly funded stadium!

The silly season of NFL franchise hunting has opened. Reason's Sam Staley writes in the Los Angeles Times:

Another National Football League season is about to kick off without a franchise in the nation's second-largest media market. The NFL, upset with its inability to get a new stadium built in Los Angeles, is now encouraging Anaheim to construct a stadium and chase the NFL dream. While taxpayers across the country continue to be fleeced by leagues and team owners demanding new stadiums, Los Angeles' mantra should continue to be "build it yourself."

after looking at some of more ridiculous examples of bad stadium decisions, he goes on to point out

The amazing thing is that these "public" investments have virtually no effect on a city's economy. Studies show that although a few new restaurants might open near a new stadium, they would probably have opened somewhere else in the city anyway. That means that jobs and dollars are simply reshuffled: No new money for the city is being generated.

and more. See the whole column.

For great economic analysis of the sports stadium issue, check out this study by Joe Bast at the Heartland Institute. Not only does he dissect the issue well, he has a interesting solution, what he calls the "Packer model"--fan ownership.

Adrian Moore is Vice President, Policy


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