“It turned out to be an excellent deal for the taxpayers,” Riggs said.
A misleading headline and quote in today's Dispatch. Little is on the line because millions of dollars in casino revenues are already obligated to the Nationwide Arena purchase. That money is GONE whether or not they play hockey. If you've ever heard of the term, 'sweetheart lease deal,' this is one. For the Blue Jackets.
The Blue Jackets and Nationwide were the winners in the arena sale (I guess you could say it's nice the Blue Jackets can at least win off the ice) The County and City gave up the casino moneys, meaning central Ohio residents were the losers. Public bailouts of multimillion dollar corporations don't just happen in Washington.
And something that I didn't see the Dispatch mention: The owner of the Blue Jackets voted to support the NHL Commissioner locking out the players. So, the public buys the hockey arena, then the team's owner votes not to play hockey.
This is the same owner that threatened and bullied Franklin County and the City of Columbus into buying Nationwide Arena, freeing his team from an onerous lease agreement that ownership willingly entered into. In an arena that was built privately because Columbus taxpayers voted NO to public funding of it.
Wow. A solid citizen who clearly wants what is best for Columbus and central Ohio.
Make sure you visit the Columbus Casino, source for the government bailout of the poor Columbus Blue Jackets