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Stadium Fund Deficit Continues to Grow as Commissioners Seek Solution

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Perhaps this is a lesson in why you shouldn't mix sports and politics.

The deal that was making its way through the legislative process, which would have forced owners to contribute more money towards the Great American Ballpark and Paul Brown Stadium to help reduce the growing stadium deficits, is now officially dead, according to Bill Price, writer for the Kentucky Post. I'll let Price explain this one:

Earlier it appeared the Reds and the Bengals might have been close to helping the county out with $10 million dollars in extra payments over the next 5 years. However, the commissioners killed the deal because of several problems including a proposed 25 cent a seat ticket surcharge on Reds tickets.

The stadium-fund deficit, which could grow to over 33 million dollars (a deficit that includes loan repayment and general upkeep expenses) is an issue that is going to have to be addressed by the commissioners going forward. For those of you with long memories who payed taxes back in 1996, you might remember that the government approved a half-cent sales tax increase to help fund the stadium. However that tax has not generated the funds necessary to plug the gap in the deficit. The current commission has already promised that they won't raise property taxes in order to fund the stadiums, but it remains unclear what they will target as their source of revenue.

The reason we don't like to bring up politics on this blog is because...well...it's a sports blog. The one thing that brings this community together is talking about the Bengals and political issues like this tend to divide us unnecessarily. However in these rare circumstances where sports and politics intersect, it gives us a chance to dip out toes into the political realm. And frankly, after feeling slightly dirty just for bringing it up, I only have one thing to say: let's keep the conversation civil (you get bonus points if you noticed the double meaning in that sentence).