Reporting Tim Kephart
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TALLAHASEE (CBSMiami) – Billionaire Norman Braman has found a partner for his opposition to the proposed upgrades to Sun Life Stadium, which would be half-funded by state and county tax money.
Cutler Bay Mayor Ed MacDougall said Thursday that he will spend his own money to set up a PAC to campaign against the Dolphins’ efforts if it’s needed, according to CBS4 news partner the Miami Herald.
“I’m in favor of a man who has $4.4 billion (Fins owner Stephen Ross), according to Forbes Magazine, paying for it himself,” MacDougall said, according to the Herald.
MacDougall’s citing of Ross’ worth came after Forbes ranked Ross as the second-wealthiest owner in the NFL. Braman also made the list of wealthiest Americans with a net worth of $1.6 billion. Braman also reportedly took public money when he was the owner of the Philadelphia Eagles, according to previous reports.
The Dolphins pitched a plan that would upgrade Sun Life Stadium to be a modern NFL stadium that could once again host Super Bowls. The Fins planned to pay for half of the cost with the other half coming from tourist/hotel taxes and a sales-tax subsidy.
The Fins have run into stiff opposition for its plans thanks to the boondoggle that is Marlins Park. The Marlins stadium was almost completely funded by tax money and owner Jeffrey Loria took that goodwill and proceeded to have a fire sale of talent in the offseason likely making the Marlins one of the worst teams in the league.
Because of the Marlins’ actions and how much they secured to pay for its stadium, the Dolphins now have to fight an even tougher battle to get any public money.
The unspoken threat surrounding all NFL teams looking for public money right now includes the city of Los Angeles. L.A. hasn’t had an NFL team in years, but has plans in place to build a state of the art stadium near the Staples Center.
While the Dolphins haven’t threatened or even considered moving if it doesn’t get the tax dollars, L.A. is the elephant in the room for all stadium negotiations and will be used as leverage if teams need it until the City of Angels gets another NFL team.
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