Remember that Chicago Cubs spring-training stadium the team is trying to get built in Mesa, Arizona, the one that featured an abortive plan to tax all the other Arizona spring-training teams to pay for it? It’s still alive, with Mesa now talking about using a combination of existing funds, selling off city-owned land, and an increase in the hotel tax to raise $99 million in construction costs.
The hotel tax hike requires voter approval, and in advance of the November 2 referendum, the Goldwater Institute — which has already gone after the proposed Phoenix Coyotes lease concessions — has been raising questions about the plan, last week with an Arizona Republic op-ed noting that the proposition authorizes spending “greater than $1.5 million” without any spending cap, and this week noting that it’s unclear how much the Cubs would provide, beyond “benefits to be determined.”
But, you know, what could possibly go wrong if Mesa voters delivered a blank check before all the ink was dry on the stadium agreement? It’s not like anything like this has ever happened before, right?