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Re: “Neal Patterson wants all the public incentives

When Kansas City worked out the horrible deal to build the Sprint Arena and the Power & Light District, we were promised that it was going to earn enough to pay back the bonds every year (it barely makes 30% of that number,) we were promised an anchor tenant at the Sprint Arena (We're still hosting exhibition NHL games to rub salt in that wound) and we were told that Kemper Arena could still operate and generate revenue (but then we awarded AEG the contract to manage both the Sprint Arena and Kemper, and they quickly mothballed Kemper in order to operate in the black at Sprint.)

All the while, UMB and The Kempers ceded much of their property to the city to make that deal happen. Don't get me wrong, UMB got some exclusive stuff out of that deal, but by and large, it was a massive failure on the part of the city to negotiate a better deal for all of us, so the American Royal and Kemper Arena were just as much victims as the tax payers of KC.

Honestly, the Foutch Bros. deal sounds much better to me than the American Royal 5,000 seat Equestrian Center, (Amazon just purchased http://twitch.tv/ because apparently watching people play video games attracts more viewers than Breaking Bad or Game Of Thrones ever has) but it would also be a shame to lose a Kansas City tradition like The American Royal and the UMB BBQ competition; especially if the assholes jumped the state line and perpetuated this border war that is killing our region. I know there are many attempting to rebrand KC and shed our identity as a cow town, and would just as soon see the American Royal leave town, but that would be a mistake.

What needs to happen is we need to elect a mayor and/or council that can sit down with Kemper and Patterson like Reagan with Gorbachev in Reykjavik, tell them what the tax payers will accept, cede nothing, and figure out a way to let Foutch Bros. do their thing with Kemper AND keep the American Royal here in KCMO.

That's easier said than done, I'm afraid, but we should settle for nothing less. I'm tired of bending over for the city AND the "philanthropists" in KC. When taxpayers rejected the Bi-State II tax for the Performing Arts Center, Kauffman went ahead and raised the funds to build it themselves. KC's voters out-negotiated the elected leaders in city hall on that deal.

Posted by Bryan Stalder on 09/14/2014 at 10:37 PM

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