The Miami Heat have borrowed money from the city twice. The Panthers have done it as well. Last year, the Marlins opened their brand spanking new ballpark and it has left a bitter tasting pill in the mouths of the people who are paying for it. The Miami Dolphins? Nope. The stadium that this team plays in was paid for by late owner Joe Robbie.
Now the Dolphins are asking for money. Not all of it. Just a portion. A portion that owner Stephen Ross is willing to pay back. A portion that comes with a 30 year guarantee not leave and guarantees of Super Bowls. Yet for all the Dolphins are willing to give up, the locals who will vote on the referendum on May 14th will have the final say. The Dolphins are not looking for a new stadium they are looking for upgrades.
Stephen Ross will take care of over 50% of the costs and the NFL will likely chip in but he is still around 200 million that he is asking for. In my opinion, that isn’t asking for much, especially when you consider where the money is coming from. As in people who don’t live in Miami. Yes, that’s right. The locals in Miami who will be voting on this bill will not pay one dime of the 1% hotel tax increase. Not one.
Unless of course they decide to leave their house and shack up on an overnight hotel stay in the city. This money will be primarily funded by those who don’t live in Miami. Like me. I will be paying for part of this tax. The three trips a year that I take to Miami and the multi-night stays will go up for me and others like me. Maybe the wrong people are getting to vote.
Yes I realize the argument is strong for the locals. Pour the money into state or local education instead. Well, I understand that but that is not what is on the agenda. The people of Miami are not voting their choice between the two, if they were, education should always win out but this isn’t about education. It’s about the perceived notion that a billionaire is asking for a handout. Guess what, they do it all the time.
The NFL and the argument being beaten with a dead horse is that the Dolphins and their stadium will no longer be in the rotation to host a Super Bowl without these needed additions. Roger Goodell wants you to believe that the downpour during the last Miami hosted bowl can not happen again. This of course is wrong as he talks about adding a Super Bowl in norther cities and next year has allowed a Super Bowl to be hosted in open air stadium in New York. Snow and cold is not a problem but rain is?
The NFL wants want the NFL wants and truth be told, there are newer, cleaner, and nicer stadiums around the NFL that are wanting to host the game and Goodell needs Miami to step up so that he can save face for giving it to Miami over one of those other teams. This May the league will vote on whether Miami or San Francisco and their new stadium will host the Super Bowl. Miami doesn’t stand a chance without these improvements.
This next Super Bowl is going to be huge. It will be the 50th anniversary of the biggest game in sports. Who wouldn’t want to host that one?
The issue I have is that the city of Miami are no longer supporting this team. Not at the stadium, not at the merchandise line, and apparently not for upgrades that would not only bring jobs to the area, but dollars in the form of top end sporting events. The University of Miami and their fans will benefit. The opportunity to sit and watch a 1:00 pm game with the sun at least somewhat redirected will be a nice change of pace from the glaring beams blinding me.
The residents of Miami don’t want to pay for these upgrades. Good because they are not. People like me are and I support the stadium agenda. I want the new look to an old stadium just like I wanted a new logo to the Dolphins previous version. The Dolphins have been a pride of Miami for decades but losing seasons have left the teams fan base negative and in disarray.
The upgrades to the stadium won’t bring people back into stadium. Only winning will. By that time it will likely be too late. If the city of Miami can’t afford to show the Dolphins a modicum of support, then why should Stephen Ross show support for the city? Especially when there may very well be opportunities to move the team. Stephen Ross has said that he will not move the Dolphins, that doesn’t mean he won’t sell the team to someone who will.