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Would you like to see your taxes help pay for this ?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Some of you remember that I live in St. Louis, MO. Most of you would recognize St. Louis as the home of Cardinals' Baseball Rams' Football and Anheuser Busch Beer ! (among other things, of course; like the Gateway Arch, The Mississippi River and Boeing/Douglas Aircraft) Sports venues are BIG BUSINESS in this city. I am a Cardinals' fan, I can take or leave football, and I have been known to drink my share of beer!

Just three years ago the property tax payers of this city voted to float a bond that helped pay for the (then new) home for the St. Louis Rams professional football franchise This bond costs each property owner approximately $10 additional taxes each year/per $10,000 evaluation. (our house valued at $80,000 costs us about $100 more taxes) I voted NO on this poposition, but it carried because voters were assured that the football stadium/convention dome would bring more business into downtown St. Louis.

Now, taxpayers are again being asked to float a bond to help pay for a (proposed) $1.9 Billion Dollar sports/shopping/entertainment/hotel complex. It would be the New Home for the St. Louis Cardinals Baseball!!! The team owner, Anheiuser Busch, Inc. would pay the "lion's share", but they want the taxpayers to "float" $20 Million of the cost! This would be a sales tax that everyone pays as opposed to a property owners' tax. Our current stadium is only 35yrs. old and they update it every season to justify higher ticket prices! I am AGAINST this proposal also. Busch "threatens" to sell the team if we can't come up with a New Home for them. That is blackmail. Again, proponents say that it would be a small investment to make compared to all the "extra business" the team would bring to downtown St. Louis!!!!!!! (you can't even find a place to park when you come downtown now to the sports/entertainment events we already host) I see this as a gross waste of funds and tax revenue. The Busch Corp. can well afford the whole $1.9 Billion!

Let's talk about using/finding or
appropriating some tax funds to help house our Homeless Population (which numbers 3,000+ people in a city of 1.7 million!) or, how about, Job Training and Placement for our unemployed and unskilled. (over 5,000 in the inner St. Louis area, alone).

Please understand that I am not against professional sports but just think that there are more important places to put tax money. How do some of you feel? I did not mean for this to get so involved, but I wanted to give you the background details. The Homeless issue is one that I feel very close to; as I volunteer with The New-Life Evangelical Ministry which devotes 100% of its effort to our city's homeless men, women and children. You may not be aware of the fact that there are just as many(if not more at times) homeless women and children on our streets than just single men. . . . . Let's pull up a chair around Debra's or my kitchen table and disuss this.
post #2 of 6
This is a time I am glad to live in a rural community...I will never be forced to give money to support a professional sports facility. I want my taxes to be used to run the government and to provide services to needy people (and animals ). Tax dollars should not be used to make the lives of a bunch of filthy rich people better. If they want a new stadium have them pay for it! They have the money! If I want to open a private business I have to pay for it myself....why should it be any different for the sports teams? They are private -- not public enterprises!

Grrrrr.....this kind of stuff irks me!
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
. .. . . A couple of things I forgot to say in my starting post: Perhaps if they didn't pay professional athletes with multi-million dollar contracts; the owners could afford their own stadiums. . . Also, in the city of St. Louis last year; they had to close two city run animal shelters and discontinue animal pick-up vans and dangerous animal patrol and removal due to lack of funds. . . . I think this would be another "Excellent" use for tax dollars. A proposition I would vote YES on!
post #4 of 6
Well - here I am at the ktichen table with coffee and (forgive me) cigarette in hand thinking about this. TLK makes a mean cup of coffee and those cookies of her.......mmmmm.....Here is my 2 cents!
Tax dollars should not be used to support big business/sports organizations. I agree with lotsocats about this as well. Sports teams are PRIVATE not public. If they were public, then maybe we could all afford to go to a game now and then. Shame on the city of St. Louis for doing away with the all important animal shelters and animal control vans. The homeless as well as our furry companions do not have a loud enough voice to be heard over the screams of 'rabid'and drunk sports fans. Unfortunatley, this is a perfect example of where city/town/state/federal governments place their priorities - on the all mighty buck!
post #5 of 6
The same thing happened here. When the Tampa Bay Bucs threatened to move on, a tax to help them build a new stadium was thrown on the ballot. They cleverly said that some portion of the money was going to education.

Naturally, the thing passed, and Tampa Community, uh, I mean Raymond James Stadium was born. People are nuts in this town for their football team.

About the portion for education.....who knows what really happened to that? We teachers say that at retirement we'll just pitch tents in the stadium parking lot.
post #6 of 6
I live in a huge metroplex, and we get this kind of thing all the time. Especially considering how many professional sports teams we have here (let's see, baseball, football, basketball, hockey to name a few). Personally, I don't agree with much about the professional sports industry as a whole and using our tax dollars that would be better used in so many ways is just too frustrating. We don't have enough money to pay teachers what they deserve, but we can keep building new sports arenas. Ugh!
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