THREE STRIKES AGAINST THE PAWSOX DEAL
Based on recent news reports, some troubling details about the new Pawsox deal have come to light. First, there is a possibility that eminent domain will be used to seize the land from its current owners in order to build a new ballpark for the benefit of millionaire Pawsox owners. Second, the initial $38 million taxpayer subsidy will come from a bond with no assurance that this bond will be subject to voter approval. Third, the taxpayer subsidy will be more than $38 million. If a $38 million bond is issued for 30 years at about a 3 percent interest rate, the actual cost would be about $58 million to taxpayers.
In response, Republican Party Chairman Brandon S. Bell stated: “There are three strikes against this deal. First, it is wrong for government to use its eminent domain power to seize private property so that multimillionaire Pawsox owners can make millions from a new ballpark. Second, it is wrong to put the state and local taxpayers on the hook for millions in debt without their approval. Third, the true cost to taxpayers for this new Pawsox deal will be about $58 million once interest costs are included. The Pawsox owners can claim their new stadium will generate $58 million in taxes over 30 years but as we all know tax revenue forecasts are usually off especially when it comes stadium deals Taxpayers should not be put at risk. The Pawsox millionaire owners should be willing to take the risk if they are so confident this is a good investment.”
Bell concluded: “The Pawsox deal is a bad deal for taxpayers. Governor Gina Raimondo supports this deal because it is a good deal for her two core constituencies: millionaire donors to her campaign and the building trade unions who have endorsed her.”