Proponents of New Bills Stadium Seek Inclusion Through Community Benefits
Dan Etna, co-chair of Herrick's Sports Law Group, was quoted in The Buffalo News discussing public funding for sports stadiums, specifically regarding the upcoming Buffalo Bills stadium construction, and how sports teams and government officials can get community buy-in through a community benefits agreement. The article explained, "Taxpayer subsidies — which in the Bills case could reach $1 billion — have become a necessary part of some of these stadium deals as teams, especially in smaller professional sports markets like Buffalo, hold much of the leverage in negotiations."
The article reported that Dan stated that, "[w]hen significant government funding is part of any stadium negotiations, opposition to the proposal is a given." He further noted that the "ultimate success of the project will hinge on how much additional tax revenue and jobs are created and the kind of community benefits that are generated as part of the deal, though that's not always easily quantifiable[.]"
He reflected, "That's what often times can make it a hard sell... You can't just say, 'this is going to happen and that's going to happen.' It's just not that linear."
The article outlined multiple possibilities for the financing deal to incorporate community benefits, including upgrading public transportation and dedicating a community green space.
Dan highlighted, "There are many ways that teams can give back to the community[.]"
Read the full article in The Buffalo News here. Access may require a subscription.