This is an archived version of a Field of Schemes article. Comments on this page are closed. To find the current version of the article with updated comments, click here.
November 15, 2004
Expos RICO case dismissed
And so much for that: The arbitrator in the Montreal Expos RICO case has ruled against the team's former minority owners, putting an end to the threat of an injunction against the team's move to Washington, D.C. It's all in the hands of the D.C. city council now, which, according to the Washington Times, most likely won't get around to voting on a stadium bill until November 30, since they can't manage to get everyone in the room at the same time.
Posted by Neil deMause
Neil, what is the incentive of anyone to put up private dollars for this stadium? If the city is planning to pay for most of it, and the stadium is going to be owned and run by the eventual team, what piece of the pie does the DC city council think it has to give away, other than to the eventual team owners themselves?
It's all about the tax shelter: the private developers would get to claim depreciation and other deductions on their taxes, without actually having to spend real money. I posted a bit about this last week (see posts for November 11 and 13); I'm also in the midst of writing an article for Baseball Prospectus that I hope will answer most questions about this deal - look for it later this week.