We've seen this movie before. A sports team asks the public for money because they "can't afford it on their own". Miami-Dade residents know very well how this movie ends, especially after our recent experience with the Marlins.
As residents of Miami-Dade, we need to send a message to Dolphins owner Stephen Ross: pay for your own stadium!
At a time when we are cutting funding across all levels of government for much needed programs, especially after our recent experience with the Marlins, we the undersigned stand firmly opposed to a giveaway of $379 million of public money for yet another billionaire sports team owner.
Time and time again, sports owners across the country have taken advantage of the fans and the cities they are in. Studies and commentaries (found here, here, and here) have shown this type of "economic investment" to be a terrible deal for taxpayers.
The Dolphins are asking for $90 million in sales tax and an additional tax that would give them another $289 million generated from tourists (which happens to be one of S. Florida's biggest economic engines).
We can instead spend our Sales Tax money where it belongs: our schools, infrastructure, and helping our small businesses. And we should ask our Legislators to allow our Tourist Tax dollars to go to long-term infrastructure projects that would directly benefit the public and generate even more tourism in the long run. For example:
- Developing an iconic pedestrian street in Downtown Flagler
- Building a transit line connecting Downtown with the quickly growing neighborhoods of Wynwood, Mid Town, and the Design District
- Investing in much-needed repairs to our water and sewer systems that is in severe need of maintenance and could potentially pollute our river and beaches.
- Renovating the unique and publicly owned Marine stadium on Key Biscayne
- Building a world class network of green space and parks
- Redeveloping one of our most prized possessions, the Miami River
We urge Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross to stop pressuring the public to pay for renovations to Sun Life stadium. We urge all voters in Miami-Dade to vote NO on the Dolphins referendum on May 14th.