It’s Cheaper to Write Zygi Wilf Checks Than Build a #Vikings Stadium #wilfare

One of the justifications the Vikings use for their Wilfare demands is that the Vikings don’t make as much money as the Green Bay Packers franchise. I don’t know how things work in your business, but normally a problem like this is solved through private investment rather than the dole, but Zygi ain’t too proud to beg.

However, as letter writer, Ward Lyndall, pointed out in the Strib today, there may be a much more efficient way to solve Wilf’s profit margin “problem”. Rather than continue with the gymnastics involved in stadium sites, construction, and funding, let’s just start writing checks to the businessman in New Jersey:

A little math produces the following analysis: The Vikings are proposing a stadium estimated currently to cost $1.1 billion. The team will contribute about $400 million, leaving about $700 million to be financed by the state and various other public entities.

In its September 2011 bond issue, the state paid an average of 2.8 percent on 20-year general obligation bonds. That’s an average of about $46 million annually in public costs for repayment of a $700 million bond to build a new stadium.

Instead of building a stadium, with its unknown cost inflation and other imponderables, why not simply offer the Vikings an annual subsidy equal to the difference in annual revenue generated by the Packers and the Vikings.

I like it. This would provide much greater government efficiency, and a more straightforward approach to redistributing the state’s wealth to a New Jersey millionaire.

5 thoughts on “It’s Cheaper to Write Zygi Wilf Checks Than Build a #Vikings Stadium #wilfare”

  1. Maybe the profit margin between the Packers and Vikings is so divergent because, oh I don’t, the Viking suck? Compare the records and Super Bowl rings and it might start to make sense. What a stupid reason to justify public spending on a stadium.

    And if they really think the Packers have such a good model, maybe instead of funding a private business, the state should just buy out the Vikings. If we’re going to invest so much in a stadium, how about some equity in the team?

  2. Ed, while you continue to beat the drum, what’s the deal with the rent we’re charging at the Metrodome. I thought I read in an article somewhere (Strib?) that we’re giving the Vikings a break on rent because they’re so hard up. If that is the case, then we’re already subsidizing the team. How come that never comes up in these discussions?

  3. So we’re already subsidizing the Vikes to the tune of $4 million/year? Sheesh. I just don’t get the economics involved here. He can’t make a free stadium work, so we’re supposed to build him a super expensive stadium to help him make a profit?

  4. @Kevin, the Vikings franchise has increased in value by hundreds of millions of dollars in the time Wilf has owned it (while using the Metrodome). The team is profitable today. The problem is that Wilf wants to make more money, but doesn’t want to use his own money to make more money. You know the saying “it takes money to make money”? In Wilf’s case, he takes the public’s money to make money.

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