January 15, 2008
Oink, Oink--Sports Pork

From an AJC article on Atlanta's AAA baseball team moving from Richmond to a $38m taxpayer funded stadium in Gwinnett County GA:

Last July, a consultant reported building a stadium with 5,500 permanent seats and grass seating for another 1,500 would cost $25 million to $30 million. Such a stadium also would include 16 private suites, 300 club seats and 2,300 parking spaces within walking distance of the stadium.

Convention, Sports & Leisure International, the Minnesota-based consulting firm hired by the Gwinnett Convention & Visitors Bureau, found that building and operating such a stadium could create hundreds of jobs, generate up to $7 million in consumer spending every year and generate as much as $12 million in tax revenue over a 30-year period.

The firm's study concluded that Gwinnett County provides "one of the strongest markets in the country to support a minor-league baseball team."

News reports in Richmond say community leaders are angry over the minor league team's departure from their community after more than four decades.

But at least one sports industry figure there says the loss is more emotional than financial.

"I dont think the direct economic impact of the Braves being here or not is that great," said John Lugbill, executive director of the Metropolitan Richmond Sports Backers, a public-private sports commisson partially funded by tax dollars. "But the positive attributes to the community are important."

See also Skip Sauer's post at The Sports Economist; be sure to read Rod Fort's comment on the post.

Posted by E. Frank Stephenson at 06:03 PM in Economics ~ in Sports

The statesman who should attempt to direct private people in what manner they ought to employ their capitals would not only load himself with a most unnecessary attention, but assume an authority which could safely be trusted, not only to no single person, but to no council or senate whatever, and which would nowhere be so dangerous as in the hands of a man who had folly and presumption enough to fancy himself fit to exercise it. -Adam Smith

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