Following up on last Monday’s “bidding war” post re: Amazon’s new North American headquarters (“This is bigger than the Super Bowl“), there are these gems from my local weekly, the Loudoun Times-Mirror: two articles on the same page detailing sports-related tax giveaways in the DMV. The first, headlined “What a kick! Land leased for D.C. United Stadium,” describes the deal between Loudoun County (henceforth known as “Sugar Daddy”) and the D.C. United soccer team to bring a “second-division” team (some kind of minor league affiliate) to Leesburg, Virginia. Plans include $15 million for “construction” (I am reaching for my wallet here) and the understanding that the county will build 1,000 parking spaces for the stadium and “provide access to a nearby park-and-ride” during events at the facility. The D.C. United will lease the property for 40 years, exact terms unreported. (Incidentally, the property is valued at $23 million.) What a kick? It’s a kick in the something all right.
Interestingly enough there is another sports-related tax giveaway story just below that describing the soccer swindle. Headlined “Bipartisan plan would ban Redskins bidding war,” I was reaching for my wallet before I finished the title. But here there may be a glimmer of hope. Apparently three politicians (unnamed in the article), one each from Virginia, Maryland, and D.C., have proposed a pact, if you will, barring any public spending on incentives for a new Washington Redskins stadium. (The club’s current lease at FedEx Field in Maryland expires in 2027.) “A” for effort is my initial reaction, though proposing a pact isn’t exactly achieving one, let alone maintaining it. The thing about most pacts is that somebody always cheats. (Unless there’s a guy named Bruno with brass knuckles standing there.) Executive thoughts on this one? A spokesman for new Virginia Governor Ralph Northam said the governor wants to “structure a creative deal” to bring the team to Virginia.
Structure a creative deal? Give me a break.
Cue Mike reaching for his wallet.