Moving professional sports teams is not economic development, it’s checkers!

At least that is what California Assemblyman Chris Norby is saying about the plans to bring a new stadium (Farmers Field) to downtown Los Angeles in the hopes of bringing the National Football League back to LA.  Norby’s full quote, seems to hit the subject spot on, he notes:

“Moving professional sports teams within the state is not economic development, it’s checkers – and ultimately there is a public price that must be paid,”

That’s right, he is saying that a sport team coming to town is creating something new for the economy, its just moving and shuffling around the spending in town.

This round of talks about having the NFL come back to LA comes hot on the heels of a measure passed by the state, which is expected to be signed into law that would expedite any legal challenges made against the stadium construction plan for Farmers Field.  In the article linked above, it is noted that the revenue from the stadium is already being linked to financing a new convention center downtown.  It seems that Los Angeles and Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) who is leading the stadium project are potentially making quite the gamble.

While others are saying the new stadium will create 10,000 new jobs for the L.A. area during these hard financial times, Norby again seems to be skeptical.  The article notes:

Assemblyman Chris Norby, R-Fullerton, questioned the value of many jobs that would be created by a new stadium — ushers, ticket sellers, popcorn vendors and other such positions do not provide long-term stability, he said.

And the research literature seems to back him up.  The only question is if anyone is actually listening to what the research and now, Mr. Norby have to say.

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