Here and there, wise and courageous citizens are rising up to oppose taxpayer subsidies for sports facilities in which private interests rake in all the money.
The retired treasurer of Scottsdale told the Arizona Republic that he will reiterate his opposition to a subsidy for a privately managed golf course.
San Diego pro-golf star Phil Mickelson is a major investor in White Buffalo Golf, LLC operator of McDowell Mountain Golf Club.
Last year, two citizens sued Scottsdale, saying it was selling $2 million of bonds to pay for clubhouse facilities, while the operator, White Buffalo, retains 97 percent of revenue generated from the operation. David Smith, the former city treasurer, had opposed the subsidy when he was in office, and will give a deposition on behalf of the plaintiffs.
Meanwhile, the Sacramento battle over a proposed $258 million subsidy for a downtown pro-basketball arena is the hottest sports subsidy controversy in the nation now. Members of the San Diego Jacobs family of Qualcomm fame are among team investors wanting the subsidy.
A local wealthy Libertarian, Chris Rufer, has given $93,000 to the campaign opposing the giveaway. "I'm against subsidy, period. It's simply a moral argument...if it was a subsidy for a fish pond, I would be against it," Rufer told the Sacramento Bee.