ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Opponents of a plan to use taxpayer money to help build a soccer stadium are urging city voters to reject the plan on the April 4 ballot.
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Glenn Burleigh with the group Team TIF says he likes soccer and used to play it as a kid – but the city has a $20 million budget shortfall. He adds that he doesn’t buy the argument a new stadium will lift the economy.
“There’s been basically like one successful publicly-financed stadium venture and that’s the Staples Center,” Burleigh says. “Virtually every other one has been a horrible deal for the taxpayers and that is nothing new.”
Burleigh says that a “Yes” vote is irresponsible and believes the city needs the $4 million. He adds the funding should go to public safety, affordable housing and public health infrastructure.
“We talk a lot about how much we do need less crime, but better relations between the public and the police department,” Burleigh says. “Talk about how the housing that is affordable is often not in good shape and filled with lead.”
He adds that lead is a huge issue in the neighborhood that he lives in.
Supporters say borrowing $65 million against a half-cent hike in the Use Tax to help build a soccer stadium would create jobs, bring more people downtown and pay for youth soccer leagues in the city.