Name That Stadium!

EVERY SCANDAL DESERVES A FITTING NAME

Let’s call it what it is. The “Ballpark TIF” stadium being built for WVU with at least $16.2 million of local taxpayer funds should be called what it is. It’s the Gift-Theft Center. (To be kind. One could think of more colorful names.) The GTC.

Monongalia County is building a baseball stadium for WVU, for free! Yes, the Gift-Theft Center. Hey, give those County Commissioners, who voted for the thing, box seats at the 50 yard line, at half court, behind home plate. The Commissioners are now actual WVU celebrities! It’s not every day that WVU Sports receives a gift (tax free!) worth tens of millions of dollars from the local taxpayers. Wow, give us all box seats at the 50 yard line. Looks like we’ve earned it. Does anyone suppose if we all showed up at once on the 50 yard line, at half court, behind home plate they could turn us away? Wave copies of the “Ballpark TIF” bill and point out the facts: we bought these seats.

Really looking forward to the $20 million revenue generating community exercise and recycling and health food center that WVU builds and gives free to the taxpayers of Monongalia County in the next few years, plus tens of million WVU dollars more for physical and social infrastructure support like street paving and homeless services and parks development and power line burial. The WVU Foundation has assets currently worth $1.2 billion – above and beyond the $1 billion annual WVU budget – so a modest $20 million multi-use actual needs center built by WVU for county taxpayers will be no problem. Thanks WVU! And thank you Monongalia County Commission and West Virginia State legislature, and WVU Athletic Director Oliver Luck, and Mon-View LLC for making the $20 million Actual Needs Center for Monongalia County such an unbelievable prospect.

Rather than a “Ballpark TIF” Gift-Theft Center built for WVU with local taxes, it would have been a better deal for the residents of Monongalia County if WVU Sports and the County Commission and Mon-View Developers LLC and the State Legislature had merely walked around Morgantown and Monongalia County blowing things up. Then at least the public would have had a chance to call in federal emergency relief monies. Oh to be so lucky. Maybe next time.

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