We’re not sure we buy the premise, but one publication estimates that spending tax money on a new Florida Marlins ballpark as opposed to a convention center will cost Miami-Dade County billions.We’re not sure we buy the premise, but one publication estimates that spending tax money on a new Florida Marlins ballpark as opposed to a convention center will cost Miami-Dade County billions.
Here’s the logic. A dollar of taxpayer money could be spent on a Florida Marlins ballpark or the Miami Beach Convention Center. Money spent on a ballpark, while having some initial good in terms of creating construction jobs, has a limited financial impact thereafter and serves mainly to gild the pockets of team owners and players. Ballparks also do not bring in outside dollars, so there’s a minimal tourism impact.
Money spent on an expansion of the convention center, meanwhile, has a trickle-down effect as tourists and conventioneers descend on the community, throwing dollars at restaurants, bars and hotels. If more than 100,000 new visitors go to conventions in Miami, their economic impact would be at the very least $1.46 billion — or upwards of $3 billion annually if you choose to believe they’ll spend a lot when they arrive in Miami.
Now, we’re not sure we agree with the premises, especially the one where the only choice for the taxpayer dollar is between a convention center and a ballpark. And we’re not so sure about the impact being $3 billion a year. We report; you decide.