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Commissioner Michelle Spence-Jones speaks on Marlins Stadium deal

Channel 10's Michael Putney interviewed City of Miami Commissioner Michelle Spence- Jones today about the Marlins Stadium deal which is up for a vote next week.

Spence-Jones is largely seen as the City of Miami Commission swing vote on the deal and can make or break the plans for the Marlins and the slew of folks on the periphery who will benefit from the construction of the stadium.

Although she voted for the stadium earlier, she has indicated she's not so inclined unless the Marlins do three things:

1. Expedite the expansion and extension of the Overtown-Park West community redevelopment agency;

2. Prevent the city, county or Marlins from taking tax increment dollars generated by the CRA; and

3. Authorize a $500 million bond to pay for redevelopment of Overtown's historic areas.

Conventional wisdom dictates that the Marlins Stadium plan will pass. Why? Well, the Marlins are not the body to decide on the conditions imposed by Spence-Jones. Her fellow City and County Commissioners can make those decisions. Surely, you see the chess move that's coming before it's actually made.

What's missing from Spence-Jones' demands are opportunities for long-term revenue benefits to the black community and guarantees of vending and jobs at all organizational levels of the Marlins stadium operations.

Even with conditions imposed by Spence-Jones or any other City commissioner or Miami-Dade County commissioner, it's important not to lose sight of the improbability of the stadium realizing the revenues projected by County and City officials.

The bottomline is that the Marlins stadium is a bad long-term deal for the people. Sure, the Stadium might provide some jobs initially but when push comes to shove, it will be another failed project. That's not to wish anything bad on the Marlins and the community; it's just using logic.

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T


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Jose Caldarone

The Marlins deal is completely one-sided. The Marlins put up almost no-money down and then the taxpayers pay a minimum of $2 billion. $2 billion. Then when the owners of the Marlins sell the team, the taxpayers will not get reimbursed but the taxpayers will get stuck having to make all the payments on the $2 billion or more in bond payments.

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