Here’s a fun fact: did you know baseball ticket sales are down?
Well, no sh*t.
Participation, viewership, and attendance at MLB games across the country are down.
But did you know that the city said ‘buh-bye!’ to more than $700 million dollars when they gave the Yankees and the Mets “tax free” municipal bonds to fund the construction of their stadiums?
The Village Voice reported that because both stadiums are on city-owned land, NYC’s baseball teams pay no rent or property taxes.
The corporate entities get taxed, but all the profits stay within the corporations.
But here’s the kicker: the government got left with a huge part of the bill, so the baseball teams were kind of like your friends who forgot to bring any cash except for that emergency twenty they stashed in their cracked iPhone case.
Only, instead of calmly demanding compensation ASAFP in the calm voice of Liam Neeson, the government (Bloomberg) decided to try and make some of their investment back.
Bloomberg had both teams provide luxury boxes which the city could then rent out. Which was a great idea, except:
a) Bloomberg made the teams in charge of renting them out and b) who goes to a baseball game to sit in nosebleed seating behind a plate of glass unless you’re getting paid to do commentary?
Also, c) the point from two paragraphs ago, the city was keeping all the profits these luxury boxes, so d) (stands for duh) what incentive would the team have to rent the boxes out?
Ya done goofed, Mikey Blooms. Ya done goofed. As the Voice remarked, “It’s all one big scam, people!” John Oliver spilled the tea on his HBO late night show, Last Week Tonight– check it out.
There’s honestly no way to put a positive spin on this unless this kind of transparency is considered paramount to some long history of financial ineptitude.[via The Village Voice] [Feature Image Courtesy Instagram]