Cuomo says Bills stadium should be built with “private money,” except for the public money involved

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has now come out and said that if a new Buffalo Bills stadium has to be built, he’d rather it be done with private funds:

“If we had to go to a new stadium, my opening position would be, ‘great. New stadium. Privately financed.’ I agree that the less government money, the better – if we had to go in that direction in the first place,” he said.

That’s a potentially important turnabout from a governor whose most recent action on the Bills front was to appoint a task force to seek ways to find public money for a new stadium, and—

“But if it was essential, I would support it,” he said. “Now, the devil is in the details. Where? How much? It’s not just government money. It would be private money, also.”

Ooooookay, so when Cuomo says “privately financed,” he actually means “not entirely publicly financed.” Which, given that even the most egregious stadium giveaways invariably involve some private money — even if it’s just a matter of the government handing over stadium naming rights to the private owners and letting them sell those to cover their share of the costs — ultimately comes down to “Of course I’m looking out for the public’s interests, don’t you trust me? You know, me, the guy who just gave the Bills $227 million for renovations to their old stadium in exchange for staying put for another six years while negotiating a deal for an entirely new stadium? Have I mentioned I’m thinking of running for president?”

6 comments on “Cuomo says Bills stadium should be built with “private money,” except for the public money involved

  1. And this is why we as a country cannot have nice things. The political process puts totally servile and compromised people in positions of power.

    You cannot get there without learning the “close your eyes and spread your legs” for the big campaign donors game.

  2. Reality is the NFL would probably be better off financially with the Bills in Toronto. And a second reality is that a group from Toronto would likely offer a higher price for the team than a group from Buffalo. So the choice is to either bury your head in the sand an get angry at tax money being given to the Bills or to let them leave for Toronto. I know which one I’d choose if I were a politician who wanted to stay in office.

  3. The SkyDome (or whatever they’re calling it now) is 25 years old which is ancient by current stadium standards. They would want to shakedown Toronto just as much as Buffalo

  4. Yeah well let me just take this outside the box here. Cuomo is nice enough, but he’s too damn pricey. He sees my rare scotch and gold plated Park Avenue pad and thinks that stuff’s for him, the troglodyte!

    We need a cheaper governor up there in New York. Let him go run for prez, and please for god’s sake, get us a governor who’s similar to, oh, Mark Dayton. A complete patsy who can be bought for nothing. Is it too much for this humble old billionaire to ask?

  5. Larry,

    Signs seem to be pointing towards the SkyDome (I avoid corporate stadium names when possible) becoming baseball only. I think new Bills owners would build a stadium, maybe closer to the airport or in Missasauga (sp?). Since Toronto has negotiating leverage (the NFL needs them more than T-dot needs the NFL), I’d expect tax money to go towards infrastructure improvements only.

  6. If the NFL really wants a team in London, this auction is the best opportunity. It leaves a tiny market for a massive one, prevents realignment, and brings a storied team to London.