Friday, May 04, 2007

From this week's City Strobe:

Arena comes with extended warranty package
When Louisville struck a deal to build a shiny new cathedral to basketball, the state agreed Louisville wouldn't have to pay operating expenses to keep the arena afloat. Instead, the city agreed to pay $6.8 million annually over 30 years to help finance construction, plus another $3.5 million if needed. Now, the Louisville Arena Authority wants the city to help pay operating expenses, which caused a minor spat between Councilman Jim King and Arena Authority chairman Jim Host. King wants no part of paying operating expenses, even though the position could signify a lack of confidence in the arena's financial viability, which could ultimately make the arena more expensive through a capitalistic Catch-22 known as bond funding. Host did what he does best: stamped his feet, gathered up his Legos and went home. What both men understand is that public arenas are notorious money losers, pissing away cash like a neocon on a freedom-spreading bender. City psychotherapist-in-chief Jerry Abramson grabbed both men by the ear and, after group counseling, emerged with language that mirrors King's position, but that ultimately won't be nailed down until the council agrees on a bond ordinance. What's a taxpayer to do? Drink the sweet photoshopped nectar of the arena's comfy seating and superior sightlines, conveniently PDFed last week at The arena's design, which brings fans closer to the floor and provides wider seats for today's modern asses, should take some of the sting out of having one's wallet perpetually empty.

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