Readers React
Readers React

NFL teams get assist from Goldman Sachs in dodging taxes

To the editor: The article quotes a sports economist who says the way investment bank Goldman Sachs structures deals to build stadiums like the one proposed for the NFL in Carson — by creating a public authority — saves the teams perhaps hundreds of millions of dollars by avoiding property and sales taxes. ("In stadium financing game, Goldman Sachs dominates," May 23)

Why is this business scheme allowed when California cities and the state need this tax money to repair infrastructure and so much more? These teams certainly depend upon this infrastructure for the people to get to the stadium.

Regularly we read reports of broken sidewalks resulting in huge payouts to people who get injured falling. These sport teams provide mostly minimum-wage jobs while all the athletes and their owners make millions.

As a taxpayer who loves this state, I am tired of reading about all these business ventures that avoid taxes. To paraphrase Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., taxes are the price we pay to live in a civil society. Let's restore civility and pay the taxes that are due rather than scheming to avoid them.

Mary Darrow, Upland

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To the editor: It seems fanciful to create a public authority to finance a stadium that will host a mere 16 games each season on the premise that $800 million can be raised through the ambitious sale of personal seat licenses to potential season ticket holders.

This could not be achieved in the most rabid of sports communities, including in the New York City area for the construction of MetLife Stadium in northern New Jersey several years ago.

Despite winning a Super Bowl in Los Angeles, the Raiders have little if no fan base here to sustain that kind of seat-license commitment. The same can be said of the Chargers. Both clubs are subpar performers that are barely playoff contenders, much less franchises this city will embrace and support.

Give Los Angeles an expansion franchise to call its own, not a retreaded failure seeking a sweetheart stadium deal. Force the NFL to build schools and other needed facilities such as police stations and firehouses to sustain a stadium that at the end of the day is not needed.

Nick Antonicello, Venice Beach

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