The Daily Shot, Ricochet, June 26, 2017
Little Caesars Arena in Detroit is scheduled to open in a few months. A third of the $862 million venue is already being paid for by taxpayers, but a recent court ruling means they’ll be spending a little more.
You see, the arena was built to host Detroit’s NHL team, the Red Wings. But politicians in the Motor City have also lured back the NBA team, the Pistons. (While they’re called the Detroit Pistons, the team hasn’t played within the city in 40 years. They’re actually out in Auburn Hills.) But to get them to come to the new arena, it was going to cost an extra $34.5 million in incentives.
Okay, what’s another $35 million when you’re already spending $300 million? Well, the problem is that the Detroit City Councilfrom bonds that were intended for schools and parks. Local activists, annoyed that their schools and parks were going to be shorted to bribe an NBA team to play downtown, took the city to court to block the move. (Oh, did we mention the city’s school system is $500 million in debt?)
The city responded byfor a dismissal, arguing that not doing this would be “devastating” and hurt the city’s “remarkable comeback story.” And — you guessed it — the judge sided with the city and dismissed the lawsuit.
So there you have it. Of course, why the city needs to pay one penny to bribe a team owned by Tom Gores, a man, remains unanswered. But the next time some grubby politician insists that they need your money for your children’s schools and parks, remember this incident.