If you are a Husky fan I hope you take time to watch the video of the hearing so you can get a clear view of how the media slants reports on the issue and the sad unprepared performances of two WSU alums who oppose the funding of Husky Stadium. These guys come off as idiots but it gets translated by the media that there is no support.
Here is a link from Bob Condotta's blog today in the Seattle Times. By reading the information you would assume that there isn't a lot of support for extending the taxes to help facilites such as Husky Stadium and Key Arena. That could be true given the environment of these current times but it would be impossible for anyone to ascertain that if they actually watched the testimony from the hearing.
The slant is not from Bob Condotta who always tells it like it is but from the source he is linking to. To be fair I don't think a lot of people have the time to spend an hour watching this so a couple of paragraphs of synopsis usually would do the trick if it wasn't so slanted.
Here's a link with info from Northwest Cable News that frankly doesn't make it sound as if there is a lot of support for it right now.
The brief synopsis leaves out the key fact that these Cougar alums made fools of themselves and their University yesterday at the hearing by misrepresenting who they actually were and who they actually represent.
They presented themselves as a group of concerned taxpayers. They then tried to make the case that they were representatives of WSU which is not true at all. Now if they said Western State I might buy into that.
For the record the administration at Washington State University is completely neutral on this because it doesn't affect them. These taxes are from King County for use in King County. So any discussion of there use in Whitman County is moot.
Washington State University also realizes that they are completely dependent on State of Washington subsidies if they want to remain a member of the Pac 10 conference. Those subsidies by the way come from the state general fund which all taxpayers in Washington state contribute to.
Points were made by the Legislators that the Performing Arts Coliseum was funded completely from the state general fund while renovations of Hec Edmundson were funded completely by donation.
Senator Murray made the point that if they truly wanted an even playing field subsidies should be cut to the WSU athletic department. He made the point that if that happened WSU athletics would be in a world of hurt.
If you actually take the time to watch the video you see that Mike Bernard and Glenn Osterhaut built a poor case of why the taxes should not be extended based on giving the University of Washington a competitve advantage over Washington State University in athletics.
You also see that the legislators rebut every single point they try to make regarding this issue using common sense which obviously alluded these two guys.
How this gets twisted that there is no support for this bill is pretty amazing when almost all the testimony presented was for passing the biil. It is also amazing that a reporter could listen to the remarks of the Legislators and come away with the conclusion that they were not in support of the bill.
It is pretty obvious from what I heard yesterday that the bill had the support of the Legislators present. How that plays out over the rest of the session is anyone's guess since this was just a public hearing by the Ways and Means Committee.
Four Silly Cougar Lies
- There are better uses for the funds -- studies show that University sports stadiums give no financial benefit to the communities they're in."
There isn't a single study out there that shows University stadiums provide no financial benefit to the community they are located in. Just for example the population of Pullman doubles on game day. All the hotels and restaurants in the area are full.
When Memorial Stadium in Lincoln Nebraska is full on game day it is the second largest city in the state!
College stadiums and stadiums/arena's in general in all produce significant revenue during events for the communities that they are located in.
- ...In all of NCAA Div.1 football you would not find an instance of an instate rival allowing state funding of sports for its rival.
It happens in every single state all the time. I could go on and on with specific examples in places like Alabama, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah, and Texas but why bother.
- Senator Marguerite Prentice called SB 6116 deal "DOA"
She denied ever saying that and they didn't bring any evidence to support that claim.
- For $150 million you could build two new high schools in the state of Washington.
Exactly why would you use money from tourist taxes which were designated for sports stadium in King County for education? Nothing against education but it isn't funded in that manner. This money can never be legally used for education or be added to the general fund. It is a special use tax designated for a single geographic area.
It is obvious that these guys didn't do much homework in putting together any of their arguments.
Mike Bernard is a Tax Consultant...would you really want him to touch your taxes or give you financial advice?
I have no idea what Osterhout does for a living but he is listed as a member of the WSU Foundation Board of Trustees.
My advice to Husky fans is not to do business with them.