Just a few miles away from where I live sits the stadium of the Potomac Nationals. I’m a fan. I’d hate to see the team we call the P-Nats leave.
But . . . Hasta la vista.
The owner of this minor league affiliate of Major League Baseball’s Washington Nationals is demanding a new stadium. He threatens to move out of Prince William County, Virginia, if he does not get it.
The Prince William County board of supervisors has already expressed interest in floating bonds to raise the $35 million the fancy new stadium would require — with the privately owned team paying the money back, with interest, over the next 30 years.
Compared to other crony-ish deals around the country, not such a terrible taxpayer swindle. Still, zillions of wrongs don’t make this right. County taxpayers would be on the hook in case of default. And if the marketplace believed the team could actually make such payments, a bank or other investors would come to the rescue.
Thankfully, a monkey wrench has been thrown into the deal. A county supervisor has proposed that voters should get a chance to decide, via a November referendum. The board of supervisors will consider the referendum tonight.
Voters should get the final say. But if there is a referendum, as much as I love having the team here, I will vote NO. I don’t cotton to forcing others to pay for my preferred entertainment.
Government has certain legitimate roles. Subsidizing sports is not one.
Even if the new stadium would be closer to my home than the old one.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.