Let the Games Begin

When blogging about the slots license that was awarded today to PITG and its North Shore plan, there is only one thing to say -- even while Bill Toland's casino blog filters the froth from Penguins fans who can't see that public funding is public funding is public funding (that is, Plan A and Plan B are just different letters in the alphabet; either way, that arena is coming out of your pocketbook):

The race goes to the Swift.

Plan C it is. Bon voyage to the Penguins if the team can't make a buck without feeding at the public trough; Pittsburgh will be no worse for the wear in the long run. And bon appetit.


2 Responses to "Let the Games Begin"

Anonymous said... 12/21/2006 2:54 PM

This looks like an affirmative action move. Barden's casinos elsewhere are second rate and rundown, even when compared to the Trump casinos, which are no great shakes either.

The IOC plan paid, with NO public funds for an arena and would provide much needed development and jobs to the Hill District.

There is no plan B, but there is a plan from Rendell that uses a large public investment offset by small payments from Barden.

Mike Madison said... 12/21/2006 3:19 PM

It puzzles me that the Isle of Capri plan gets characterized as using "private funds" rather than "public funds." True, there are no tax rebates or other direct government subsidies involved, but where would all that arena money come from? The gambling public, of course, and whether or not you like legalized gambling, it's unquestionably a form of regressive taxation. Isle of Capri would take some of its anticipated profits from operating the casino and plow them into an unscale real estate development called a hockey arena.

Or, to use a different and equally correct characterization, Isle of Capri wanted to give the City of Pittsburgh more than $200 million on condition that Isle of Capri got the slots license from the state, and on the further condition that the City of Pittsburgh use that money to build a hockey arena. The City of Pittsburgh wouldn't be using IoC to launder its budget, but the result would be the same.

Public, not private. If the Pens want a new arena, they should partner with a real estate developer and plan to recoup their investment via ticket and merchandise sales, sales of broadcast rights, and reduced player and staff salaries.

Search Pittsblog

About Pittsblog

Pittsblog 2.0 is written by Mike Madison, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Send email to michael.j.madison[at]gmail.com. Mike also blogs at Madisonian.net, on law and technology. Chris Briem of Null Space drops by from time to time.

All opinions expressed at Pittsblog 2.0 are those of their respective authors and of no one (and no thing) else, least of all the University of Pittsburgh.

Pittsblog 2.0 has a motto: "It's steel good in Pittsburgh." Say it aloud, with a Pittsburgh accent.

Comments are moderated.
Subscribe to Pittsblog comments


Blog Archive

Header Background

Header background images licensed from (left image) lemonad and (right image) plaskota under Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - Share Alike 2.0 Generic licenses.


Copyright 2003-2010 Michael J. Madison - WP Theme by Brian Gardner - Blogger Blog Templates, ThemeLib.com