Thursday, March 31, 2005

Another win for big government

Today, the New York Metropolitan Transit Authority's board unanimously voted to accept the New York Jets $720 million bid for the West Side railyards, the site of the proposed West Side Stadium. Three non-voting board members opposed the bid, to no avail.

What's unbelievable is that the board rejected Cablevision's $760 million bid, calling it "not credible." And the Jets' bid is at all credible? Cablevision's proposal to buy and develop the lands is 100% funded by Cablevision. The Jets will buy the railyards themselves, yes, but their complete plans to build the stadium and develop the surroundings are possible only because of $600 million from taxpayers. Once again, we have the old "full faith and credit" lie of big government: "full faith and credit" only because the taxpayer's wallet backs it!

Even the New York Times admits the stadium's projected cost is now $2 billion. At first, it was a billion-dollar stadium. Then a few months ago, it was $1.3 billion. When will the madness stop?

This is my prediction. If the stadium proponents win, sometime during its construction, the Jets will claim they're out of money and can't afford to finish the stadium. Bloomberg (assuming he wins re-election this year) will say that we can't leave the stadium half-finished, especially when it's for "the public benefit." Then the city and state governments will pony up whatever money is needed.

The Times article notes that the state budget currently being deliberated in Albany does not include New York state's share of the stadium: $300 million in tax dollars to help finance it, with NYC putting up an equal $300 million. Hey, why worry when you have the taxpayers as an unlimited credit card?

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