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The NBA's Future in Milwaukee Depends on Stadium Financing

A local alderman makes the case for a one percent sales tax dedicated to providing public funding for a new stadium to house the Milwaukee Bucks.
April 16, 2015, 1pm PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Alderman Robert Bauman penned a statement in response to recent development in the ongoing saga over the stadium deal for the Milwaukee Bucks NBA franchise. The risk to the franchise's future in Milwaukee comes from the gap in funding necessary to build a new arena for the team.

"It appears that the state legislature has balked at Governor Walker’s original $220 million funding proposal. It appears they are focused on approving a funding package of $150 million. This leaves a funding gap of at least $100 million ($500 million in projected cost, less $250 million in private capital and $150 million in state financing). State legislative leaders have suggested that the city and county come up with this $100 million or what could be an even bigger share if the actual costs of construction run over $500 million."

Alderman Bauman notes that anything over $50 million is not a plausible figure for the city—tax increment financing will be unavailable because the stadium would be exempt from property taxes. He does, however, suggest a one percent sales tax—a plan endorsed by the Cultural and Entertainment Capital Needs Task Force created by the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce. The addendum to a separate press release [pdf] lays out the one percent tax scheme.

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Published on Thursday, April 16, 2015 in Urban Milwaukee
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