Thursday, January 17, 2008

What About Milhouse??

So the story breaks this afternoon that UW wants $150 MILLION from King County to help pay for the $300 million total it will take for Husky Stadium. This is the same tax package that the Sonics asked for - twice - and were shot down - twice - and is why we're about to see them leave as soon as humanly possible.

I voted for the Mariners stadium, and I voted for the Seahawks stadium. Sports teams add to the quality of life, and I had no issues with either team asking for public money. The Seattle area is better off having the Mariners and Seahawks and playing in great facilities, just like I believe the Sonics would be in a great situation if they could get the Key thing done.

But that was one thing. But for a private institution, for amateur athletics, to ask for this kind of money from King County residents seems pretty nuts to me. What if UW doesn't get their way? Do they threaten to move to Spokane? How can any lawmaker approve something like this without taking into consideration that yes, there is another school in this state that is trying to finish a renovation of their own right now? Isn't this providing a huge competitive edge to a school that goes out of it's way to boast about how many millionaires they have that are season ticket holders? The big, powerful Huskies asking for tax money for their playpen? Can't they just be like everyone else and try to, oh, I don't know, get their own to pay for their luxuries?

Ok then. If you are going to open the state coffers for UW, well, the natural question is, what about Milhouse? What about the Cougs?? We'd only need about $40 million and things would be fantastic in Martin Stadium. How about making it a joint request for WSU and UW to upgrade their football stadiums and ask for a cool $200 million? Or should we send Jim Sterk to Olympia right now with a plan to say "excuse me, but I GOTTA GET MINE!"

Maybe this doesn't bother you, or maybe you just don't care, but I can't believe this is even going to be seriously considered. UW can spin this any way they want, about how this is about the safety of King County residents or whatever else they are going to have Dan Evans pitch to Christine Gregoire and the rest (Gregoire is a Husky btw). But isn't this just UW elbowing their way past the Sonics situation? There are rumors percolating that in a very short time, a new Key Arena renovation plan will be announced that will be double the square footage, and double the revenues of the old barn. Doesn't UW asking for this just muddy the water and potentially make it even that much more difficult for the Key Arena renovation that is about to come out?

So consider this - not only would UW be 1) hurting the Sonics chances of staying, 2) creating an unfair competitive advantage by getting the County to help them recruit athelets, but also, 3) what about WSU???

I also don't know if anyone was paying attention, but Gregoire told state legislators yesterday that this is going to be a tight year in Washington. That this will very much be a time of not a lot of lavish spending. I wonder if that tune will change with her beloved UW now with their hands out?

IF you live in King County, call or e-mail your reps. Tell them you are against any public funds for a college football team. Or better yet, remind them that it's an election year and you will be watching very closely what happens this session. Amazing how little can get done on anything close to a controversial issue in election years?

6 comments:

Montlate-Jake said...

Sonics are here today gone tomorrow. UW is a landmark school in america and a high priority of the state. Watch how fast this gets passed. 1.3 billion(with a b) surplus and governor is in bed with Uw. Sorry coug-cry-babies. U lose, again.

kaddy said...

The arrogance never ceases to amaze me - they can pay for their upgrades out of their own pocket, just like everyone else. I would be so unbelievable pissed if this happened...

Σ (FormerlyKnownAsBrinkHater) said...

Its a VERY interesting issue and question. On one hand, you have a state owned institution that is in need of "repair for safety." But then you have the issue of cost PLUS the fact that the stupid thing is used a whopping six times a year (oh yeah, they have the track..)

Its political suicide anyway you cut it...If the Hawks were still there or if there were some other grab (like meshing that with something to keep the Sonics), then you'd have something...

Its too divisive..I don't see how it goes through...

Sedihawk said...

I can't believe how well it's being received in the P-I today. Even the democrat from Spokane is saying it's good? And the most evil man in Washington, the guy who loathes the Sonics and will pop champagne when they leave, Frank Chopp, says this is a much better option than giving money to the Sonics?? What, exactly, are we missing here? Are they blind to the idea that this is going to give them a huge competitive advantage to recruiting, even bigger than they have now? It's just so incredibly unfair.

It's like they want it both ways, constantly reminding people how rich they are, yet they want joe taxpayer to pay for their playground. UW is playing this up huge as a community park type thing, with lots of high school games on Friday. Even worse, they are going to turn this into a deal where this money in a down economy will be for them, instead of the Sonics? The Sonics are on life support anyway, but this could seal the deal. Come on Milhouse, get off your teeter-totter and get your butt over to Oly NOW and make some noise for old WAZZU! Don't take this lying down.

Evan85 said...

I'm going to take the positive approach here... The TNT quoted Sterk as basically saying "we're going to watch this very closely" and "this could open the door to a lot of things." This is far from a done deal, and in the end it could end up being a jackpot for us - highly unlikely, but it could happen. The way money gets tossed at "education" in this state amazes me. How many hundred million has been pumped into Pullman in the last few years? A fair share in my oppinion.

This is a great opportunity for Prez Floyd to establish himself as a leader. Realistically, he's probably in Olympia as we speak. Just wait for tomorrow's paper.

millcreekcoug said...

UW a landmark school in America?

What weed are you smoking?

Anyone east of the Rockie would assume you were talking about Wisconsin....