The slideshow below shows an exchange I had with self-described Vikings fan, Kevin_WI. Notice how he assumes that the Vikings generates FAR more revenue for the state than people living in the reality based community
Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.
Pointing out to him that his numbers made no sense got me blocked. Oh well.
While two people may disagree on whether a we should tear down a 30 year old stadium to build a new stadium with a 30 year lease, we should be able to agree upon objective facts like how much tax revenue the Vikings payroll generates. While Kevin didn’t seem ready to believe me during that exchange, perhaps he’ll take the Vikings’ stadium consultants, CSL’s, word for it. The numbers below come from CSL’s report on how much revenue would be generated at a new stadium. They account for increases in payroll over time. Here is what they say would be generated in income tax revenue in the first 10 years:
Kevin claimed $350 million. My back of the envelope calculation on Twitter came to $96 million. CSL’s number (the sum of the 10 years shown above that accounts for income growth and I believe includes taxes from non-player salaries): $155 million.
Over those ten years, the state would spend $38 million per year on debt payments. Ten years at $38 million/yr = $380 million. That’s not even counting the debt payments on Minneapolis’ $150 million construction cost share, or the ~$10 million/yr in operating costs Minneapolis taxpayers would be on the hook for.
Vikings fans and Zygi Wilf would like to see people other than themselves pay for a new stadium. I don’t. While we may not agree upon how to fund a stadium that doesn’t need to be built, we should at least be able to agree upon the financial realities of what Wilf and fans like Kevin are demanding from the public.