Will Weak-Kneed Politicians Force Taxpayers to Pay for New Bears Stadium?

From The Center Square:

Group warns against public financing for Bears stadium

(The Center Square) – With talk about the Chicago Bears relocating, some have raised concerns about taxpayers picking up the tab for a new stadium.

The team has submitted a bid to buy the Arlington Race Course property in Arlington Heights for possible development.

Other parties have reportedly made offers as well.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has called it a “negotiating tactic”, noting the Bears are locked into the Soldier Field lease with the city until 2033.

If the Bears were to move, Brian Costin, deputy state director with Americans for Prosperity, said the team’s owners should pay for the stadium.

“Privately financed and they make it on their own rather than relying on forcing taxpayers to subsidize a company that is owned by billionaires,” Costin said.

Several NFL teams have used public financing to pay for new stadiums, including a 45% share of Minnesota Vikings stadium, and a whopping 86% share in Indianapolis for the Colts stadium.

The Bears previously discussed the possibility of building a stadium in Arlington Heights nearly 50 years ago, but instead renovated Soldier Field with the state of Illinois raising funds to help the team do so.

The Bears also undertook a major renovation in 2002.

If the team’s bid is accepted, Costin said the public should be wary of optimistic economic impact studies.

“The sophisticated sales pitch to elected officials to try to convince them that it is wise to take money from the public and the taxpayers and give it to a corporation is unwise and it is not good economics,” Costin said.

He added that economic impact studies usually don’t include the cost to the taxpayer.

Costin pointed to Bridgeview’s SeatGeek Stadium, which opened in 2006, as an example of how taxpayers get handed the bill. The Village of Bridgeview issued $135 million in general obligation bonds for the construction of the facility. Bridgeview’s bond rating fell to junk status in 2017 and property taxes have increased.

It takes about five years to build a new NFL stadium, so the earliest the Bears could relocate would be in 2026.

Costin is hopeful the city of Arlington Heights won’t give the Bears a free ride to locate there.

“If you are going to be a contributing member to the community that you’re in, you should be treated just like every other business and every other resident in that community and pay your property taxes like everyone else,” Costin said.


Will Weak-Kneed Politicians Force Taxpayers to Pay for New Bears Stadium? — 30 Comments

  1. Our political “leaders” are the biggest group of losers in our society.

    They are liars, traitors, woke fools – who don’t know history, economics, or a basic understanding of sociology.

    They are only interested in themselves. They disgust me.

  2. Well said CLM.

    Let the Bears GTFO of ChiRac, then sell the Soldier Field.

  3. CLM ,they ought to be tarred and feathered.

    Very few survived that.

    The boiling tar burned deep.

  4. It’s welfare for the rich.

    They make a heck of a lot more off the system (what with subsidies, tax breaks, etc.) than the poor and they really don’t need it.

  5. In 2004 Jerry Jones asked us to ‘give’ him a half billion to put the Cowboys in Fair Park.

    We told him adios.

  6. It is well past time for the present owners of the team to sell it to some billionaire or billionaire consortium. Let the billionaire(s) pay for a new stadium somewhere. Not Arlington Heights. This is still a good city and community in spite of some whackos coming in with their diversity, inclusion, equity BS. Even though the Bears would play only two exhibition games and 8 regular season games there, their presence would ruin AH. Of course there would likely never be any playoff games there.

  7. If you think the Bears are bad at drafting personnel, consider what Illinois Voters have done.

  8. McKaskey’s are just like IL government – vaccuum cleaners. Time to change the bag.

  9. Terminator, be very careful!
    You’ll be added to ‘a list’ by Johnsburg Mayor Hetterman, McHenry Township Clerk Victor-Victoria Aylward, Sheriff Prim and Antifa rising star Tauler for having ‘Extremist Views”

    Watch out for the new Gaystapo!

  10. Green Bay WI owns the Packers.

    That is a successful model which should be explored by AH taxpayers.

    If Bears ownership won’t offer tv rights/endorsement deal/ ticket sales profit-sharing (or complete sale) to the host community, let them look for a better fit.

    They (the team ownership) needs the location more than the location needs them.

  11. Nothing wrong with Soldiers Field along DuSable Drive. Let the Bears stay there and be referred to as the “Chicago” Bears. If somehow Arlington Heights allows the Bears into their community, then a condition ought to be that their official name is the Arlington Bears. The NFL and all media would have to refer to them as the Arlington Bears.

  12. Look! Something that most of can agree on! The Bears should not receive a penny of public money, to either move or stay in Chicago.

    Also, FWIW, I actually don’t think that we will see taxpayers pay for a new stadium for them.

    We *MAY* still see taxpayers continue to subsidize their current situation, which is trash (the arrangement, not the stadium), but harder to just eliminate.

    **Green Bay WI owns the Packers.**

    No, Green Bay does not own the Packers.

    The Packers are a publicly owned non-profit.

    They are definitely not owned by the city of Green Bay.

  13. LOL.

    Hey Susan.

    I lived there for 3 years.

    Green Bay has a good business model except when they hire Northwestern Univ grads to run the front office.

    Go Pack Go.

    It’s fun watching the Bears flail with their never ending parade of quarterbacks.

    Rodgers was ruined by Danica Patrick and is working beyond his expiration date being a little whiner.

    Hopefully the kid from Utah can step up when Rodgers retires at the end of this season.

    Otherwise the Pack is just going to repeat the McKaskey way of running things with IL liberals in the front office in GB.

    Yes, I am a shareholder.

  14. Shake, every time you post just reaffirms people on this boards opinion of you.

    Picking nits does not make one smart.

    I live in IL and own Packer shares.

    Go figure.

    A 16oz beer in Lambeau is 5.50.

    How does that work out at Soldier Field?

    My rent must be due.

    Cue Rawhide for the intellectually superior poster. LOL

    Susan I got the post and chose not to correct.

    Why should I?

    Some people are just not happy unless they point out other people’s mistakes.

    Let’s just call Shake the editor in chief.

  15. JT – I’m not “picking nits.”

    There’s a huge difference between the team being publicly owned, and the team being owned by the city of Green Bay. Her comment was about how Arlington Heights should take Green Bay‘s example owning the Packers, based on something that isn’t true.

    Also, FWIW, the NFL prohibits the kind of ownership structure that Green Bay has, but Green Bay got grandfathered in.

  16. Alabama, your police record is concerning to the Woodstock PTA. Explain it.

  17. Nothing to explain, Cuke, but valiant effort. Got anything accurate or relevant to add?

  18. Shake, please refer back to my post about picking nits.


    And by the way the Bears still suck and I was once a fan until moving out of the media cesspool in Chicago.

    Lot’s of angry sports guys in this town.

    See you in the playoffs if they make it that far using 2 different quarterbacks all season.

    The new kid from LSU shows promise but the McCaskey’s will ruin it just like everything else they touch.

  19. JT, “The new kid from LSU”?

    You seem confused again.

    Packer stock comes with absolutely no rights.

    You don’t get a vote, you don’t get dividends, nothing.

    What you get is a nice peice of paper from the Packer organization that you can frame and hang in your man cave?

    It basically has no value.

    Is the stock even saleable?!

    So how much did you pay/donate for your piece of paper?

    Congrats on “giving” the Packers your money for nothing in return.

    You do realize they allow “shares” to be purchased when they need money to update or renovate that stadium.


    And I’m not a Bears fan.

  20. Joseph is another tool like shake. Why do I get a proxy to vote if I can’t vote? Yes, it is hanging on my wall which is the purpose of the purchase in the first place. No it is not saleable. Who cares.

    Finally, yes they allow shares to be sold so they get money. They also fleece Brown County residents via a sales tax increase which never gets reduced after improvements are made. Does that sound like the state you live in?

    Also, Good luck with Fields kid this Sunday. Typical wash rinse repeat coming out of the McCaskey’s and management. Remind me what the definition of insanity is again?

  21. You are pathetic. I don’t care about Fields. I said I’m not a bears fan. You don’t even know what college he went to. Good comeback. 👍

  22. I thought so Joseph re my comeback.

    I take you calling me pathetic as a compliment.


    Thank you for the accolades.

    Man why are you liberals so angry.

    Fine I made a mistake.

    I’m human.

    He went to Ohio.

    Oh, Ohio State in case you are one of those overly anal liberals.

    Good to meet another one of you foaming at the mouth types.

    As I said.

    Wash Rinse Repeat with the Bears.

    Any other flaws you want to point out to another human being or are you satisfied with your last diatribe.

    I’m sure that high iq guy will post if you don’t.

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