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Isabel’s morning briefing

Tuesday, Mar 14, 2023 - Posted by Isabel Miller

* Here you go…

       

51 Comments
  1. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 7:12 am:

    ===Whether the Chicago Bears leave or not, taxpayers are on the hook for growing Soldier Field debt payments: Due to refinancing and years of primarily paying interest instead of principal, the debt owed for Soldier Field has ballooned from the original $399 million to $631 million, according to the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority===

    Let’s be very clear, open, transparent, and honest.

    As “some” here are huge advocates for the Bears getting a Billionaire Bailout, the reality is “taxpayers” will be… will be… hurt by the McCaskeys bailing out on Chicago Park District.

    For me to be “Green”…

    * Bears make right with the Chicago Park District

    * Structured two entities (facility, and “marketplace”) so there’s a division of each

    * A five year, renewable, by agreement of both parties, taxing agreement on the “marketplace” property, maximum 3 renewals (15 years), sunsetting language.

    * All infrastructure around the whole project is on the table.

    Until the Bears make right with Chicago, not one nickel. Not ONE.


  2. - Blitz - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 7:21 am:

    Snap cuts have me worried for my mother. Early 60’s and became disabled after an injury working at the now shuttered Chrysler plant in Rockford area. She’s been relying on that for the past 10/11 months while trying to get the state to grant her Disability.


  3. - Leslie K - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 8:00 am:

    I was googling to try to get more details about how this disastrous NASCAR deal went down and learned (for the first time) that it is a 3 year deal. 3 years of destroying life in downtown Chicago for residents and at the height of tourist season?

    I love auto racing. I used to volunteer at auto races. This NASCAR deal just gets more terrible the more we learn about it.


  4. - Suburban Mom - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 8:12 am:

    ===does not include a way to track when Black history is taught during the school year ===

    Gonna guess it’s February.

    It’s always February.


  5. - Stuck in Celliniland - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 8:13 am:

    Agree with OW on the Bears deal but in addition to his proposals to get his “green,” the State needs to legislate that as part of the deal the Bears need to actually invest in winning, and winning consistently. Starting off with at least beating a Rodgers-led team no matter where he ends up next season.


  6. - hisgirlfriday - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 8:18 am:

    @Leslie K

    If I had the chance, I would have voted against Lori Lightfoot in the mayoral race based on that NASCAR deal alone. Surprised it wasn’t more of an issue but I guess voters felt LL messed up a lot of stuff.


  7. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 8:24 am:

    ===to legislate that as part of the deal the Bears need to actually invest in winning===

    The sports radio blog is down the dial, there’s even a podcast.


  8. - Stuck in Celliniland - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 8:34 am:

    ==This NASCAR deal just gets more terrible the more we learn about it.==

    There’s a NASCAR-quality speedway in the Chicago area, it’s outside Joliet. Use that. Quite a novel concept.


  9. - low level - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 8:44 am:

    == I would have voted against Lori Lightfoot in the mayoral race based on that NASCAR deal alone… messed up a lot of stuff==

    No consultation w Aldermen or constituents. Total failure of policymaking. It just goes to show bad self styled “reformers” can be.


  10. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 8:54 am:

    Always looking for a scapegoat instead of who is actually to blame for the Soldier Field financing debacle.

    Hint, it’s not the Bears.

    How will Brandon’s proposed hotel tax do the convention and hotel industry that is supposed to pay for the bonds?


  11. - Rabid - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 8:54 am:

    Ohio took the money, Illinois took the curry


  12. - Techie - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:02 am:

    @Blitz

    I also know people who depend on SNAP to buy food, and the cuts hurt a lot.

    I saw something the other day about how seniors are the fastest growing segment of the homeless population, and something like this is only going to exacerbate the problem.

    Our social safety net is nowhere near as robust as it needs to be.


  13. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:03 am:

    ===Always looking for===

    You need to start looking for 60/30, and a Governor you continually run down as bad for business and Illinois, to sign off on your Gillespie Billionaire Bears Bailout.

    The Billionaire Bears will first hurt Chicago, the Park District, and now they want to hurt Arlington Heights schools and students.

    Why should the Bears not just pay the principal owed? Could get them closer to 60/30…

    You are advocating… so you realize… The Billionaire Bears leave over $600 million in debt with Chicago on a lease the Billionaire Bears are breaking… and at the same time the Billionaire Bears want taxing considerations for 40… 4-0 years… on a building that will need renovations in 20-25 by pretending it’s “really about the marketplace”

    Not one nickel. Not ONE.


  14. - JS Mill - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:07 am:

    =Always looking for a scapegoat instead of who is actually to blame for the Soldier Field financing debacle.

    Hint, it’s not the Bears.=

    So when a business cannot figure out how to finance a multi billion dollar deal that is not their fault? LOL.

    Spoiler alert- they could get a loan, they want taxpayers to pay for it instead. Kind of like the British royal I guess.


  15. - The Magnificent Purple Walnut - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:07 am:

    It appears that the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority may have done more mismanaging than managing. If the Bears have lived up to their end of the lease for Soldier Field, they should not have to pay down the debt.


  16. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:09 am:

    ===If the Bears have lived up to their end of the lease for Soldier Field, they should not have to pay down the debt===

    Then no Billionaire Bears Bailout.

    I’m cool with that ending.


  17. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:19 am:

    ===If the Bears have lived up to their end of the lease for Soldier Field===

    … they’d be staying till 2033


  18. - regular democrat - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:20 am:

    The Bears have been paying their rent but the sports facility has only been paying interest which of course should not surprise anyone as kick the can is everyone’s favorite game in Chicago when it comes to finance. I fully agree that the Bears should not get one thin dime except for possible normal infrastructure (sewer, water etc). They are looking at doubling maybe tripling the value of their franchise with this project and want taxpayers to help them achieve that is pretty outrageous. When they sell the team for 10 billion are they going to return any monies to the taxpayers? Of course not.


  19. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:27 am:

    Why don’t the Bears pay the 600 million in principal owed for an asset owned by the Chicago Park District and mismanaged by the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority? Do they get the title to the land and building then?

    With that keen grasp of finance I am sure there is a place for you in the Brandon Johnson administration.


  20. - low level - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:29 am:

    Lightfoot cant leave office soon enough. Seriously. Dont let the door you know what. Then downtown residents will have this crap event to remember her by until 2026.

    Lets hope the Wagespauck / Harris efforts at more city council
    autonomy are successful and provide greater oversight for events such as this in the future.


  21. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:33 am:

    ===With that keen grasp of finance===

    The Bears are worth ~$5.8 billion (with a b), and have less that 2% debt, according to Forbes, and according to the Packers public records, the Bears will receive, roughly, $330 million (if they haven’t already) in March.

    With the backing of the NFL, naming rights. PSLs, skybox monies, the Bears can’t finance a building?

    “Accountants”, heal thyselves, lol

    - LP -, you say Illinois is a terrible place for business, “never” has balanced budgets, over-taxed…

    The state can’t afford helping the Billionaire Bears.

    You should be first in line *AGAINST* this.

    Why aren’t you?


  22. - Friendly Bob Adams - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:35 am:

    I would think the new mayor could cancel the NASCAR deal, especially if people complain loudly enough this summer.


  23. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:36 am:

    ===Why don’t the Bears pay the 600 million in principal owed===

    Show me your 60/30 *with* the governor on board with a bailout….

    Show me your 71/36 *with a promise to override a veto* to a bailout…

    Otherwise, yeah… pay up. Get those “green” votes by paying up.

    The Bears are suppose to stay till 2033

    Consider this a “breaking the lease fee”… for votes and a signature


  24. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:39 am:

    Breaking the 6 million dollar a year lease with 10 years to go for a normal infrastructure on a stadium that would take a minimum of 4 years to build by paying 600 million dollars?

    Let’s go Brandon!


  25. - Pundent - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:43 am:

    =Always looking for a scapegoat instead of who is actually to blame for the Soldier Field financing debacle.=

    Doesn’t sound like a winning argument in getting state or local assistance. In fact what it does sound like is “give me everything I’m asking for to create the best deal for me, but if it doesn’t work out for Arlington Heights or the State, not my problem.” Good luck with that.


  26. - Big Dipper - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:55 am:

    ==Why aren’t you?==

    Because trolls aren’t logical.


  27. - Stuck in Celliniland - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:55 am:

    ==Why don’t the Bears pay the 600 million in principal owed==

    How about make Aaron Rodgers pay it back. Doesn’t he own the Bears? Or if that’s too much for him, then maybe get the Packers to pitch in.


  28. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 9:59 am:

    LP

    The state has the absolute right to include a payoff if they choose to do so as part of a package for the Bears to move. If the Bears don’t like it then they don’t have to take the offer. I’m not saying the legislature would do that in the legislation but it would be within their right to do so.

    You seem to have zero grasp on the concept of getting to a point where there is enough votes to pass something. You just want to do what you always do and that is to simply whine about everything.

    And, it really is nice to see you continue to fight for those billionaires. lol. What, are you on contract with the Bears to be their shill?


  29. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:01 am:

    It’s nice to see paid leave signed into law. The U.S. is behind the curve when it comes to mandating paid leave for everyone. I’m glad Illinois has done something that Congress has failed to do.


  30. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:04 am:

    So logical to pay to 600 million in Soldier Field debt and in return get a sewer system, wider roads and traffic lights

    Who wouldn’t make that deal?


  31. - Anon324 - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:05 am:

    ==I would think the new mayor could cancel the NASCAR deal, especially if people complain loudly enough this summer.==

    The contract allows the city to cancel future years with 180 days notice. With the shortfall in hotel taxes mentioned in the stadium bond payment article, it seems the prudent thing to do would be to see what the revenues and hotel occupancy look like before making that decision.


  32. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:09 am:

    Listened to the oral arguments on the SAFE-T Act this morning. There were some interesting questions from the Justices and it didn’t seem like some of them were buying the argument that the General Assembly doesn’t have a right to do what they did as far as eliminating cash bail.


  33. - don the legend - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:20 am:

    * NYT | A Giant Blob of Seaweed is Heading to Florida:

    My previous attempt was blocked and for good reason, I suppose. So I’ll try again:

    So a Giant Blob of Seaweed has something in common with Rauner, Griffin and Proft.


  34. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:21 am:

    ==Who wouldn’t make that deal?==

    They wouldn’t have to. Up to them. Again, you are clueless when it comes to what it takes to get something passed. You whined during the Rauner years about that and you are still whining about it now. I can’t help it if you don’t understand how the legislative process works. If you think whining works then I guess continue doing what you are doing.


  35. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:24 am:

    ===Let’s go Brandon===

    No, that’s Trump, bailing out Billionaires like the McCaskeys.

    Your projection is comical.

    ===Who wouldn’t make that deal?===

    The deal the Billionaire Bears should make is…

    * 12-year, $100 million naming rights

    * Pre-sale skyboxes (then the required tickets too, don’t forget, a two-fer)

    * Pre-sale Personal Seat Licensing, allowing the opportunity to then buy tickets.

    * Get financing. Have the NFL back the note. Borrow off the asset value of the land asset to build

    * Announce a self-financed building and project.

    That’s a deal.

    Otherwise… where’s your 60/30, signature… 71/36 override?


  36. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:30 am:

    - LP -

    Where are the Billionaire Bears’ “corporate sponsors and partners”?

    You want that to include “the cost of education in Arlington Heights”… “Illinois and Arlington Heights taxpayers”

    Those aren’t partners, they’re getting fleeced, like you said, for “revenue”


  37. - Stuck in Celliniland - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:33 am:

    ==The contract allows the city to cancel future years with 180 days notice.==

    How about the new mayor declare “a public health crisis” downtown (i.e., exhaust fumes cause respiratory disease), and immediately cancel the race on their Day One in office?


  38. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:37 am:

    ===How about…===

    … you try to add to the discussion with honesty to an idea, or just give the “Springfield Patch” report on a clogged storm water drain?

    Geez, Louise.


  39. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:43 am:

    Is the Chicago City council that approved the billion in tax subsidies to the Lincoln Yards development, because it is in the long term best interests of economic development, run by MAGA Trump supporters of billionaires?

    Still don’t understand how on earth you think a redeveloped Arlington Park would provide less tax money to schools and Arlington Heights than it receives today.

    Wanna bet the stadium gets built and the government pays for the infrastructure through an entertainment tax?


  40. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:43 am:

    ==How about the new mayor declare “a public health crisis” downtown==

    🤦‍♂️


  41. - don the legend - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:49 am:

    OW, Thank you. I live in “Celliniland”. You’d be hard pressed to find 10% of today’s voters who would know who he is talking about. But I imagine there is a commenter in New York who is “Stuck in BossTweedLand”.


  42. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:49 am:

    ==Still don’t understand==

    No, you don’t. That’s obvious.


  43. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 10:56 am:

    ===Lincoln Yards development===

    Not the same, as the Bears are in a closed industry with all shared revenues and closed markets exist for competition.

    Trump tried to own an NFL franchise, k, you’re missing the point because you have no point except to try to help the McCaskeys fleece Arlington Heights.

    ===you think a redeveloped Arlington Park===

    No one forced the Bears to buy without legislative guarantees. If anything they should flat out fire their business managerS for such a move, thinking that a Billionaire Bailout is guaranteed

    What’s next, comparing AH to Englewood CA for the “need of businesses” and the Bears are the Rams and Chargers bringing “hope” to the blight that is Arlington Heights?

    ===Wanna bet the stadium gets built and the government pays for the infrastructure through an entertainment tax?===

    That’s good governing.

    Great governing is making the Billionaire Bears pay for their own projectS and *then* add the Amusement Tax

    The Bears can do this all on their own.


  44. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 11:10 am:

    Don’t kid yourself OW the fans will pay for all of this largesse one way or another.

    The stadium won’t get built without the support of neighbors in Arlington Park and surrounding areas who you assume prefer the empty park as it is.


  45. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 11:15 am:

    ===the fans will pay for all of this largesse one way or another.===

    Then let the Bears pay for all of it, the taxes after will sort out the rest.

    Why would the Bears want to be the bad guys making people pay “one way or another” to increase revenues and get breaks too?

    ===The stadium won’t get built without the support of neighbors in Arlington Park and surrounding areas who you assume prefer the empty park as it is.===

    The Bears will lose money too, owning a parcel of land just sitting there.

    Anything else? You about done?


  46. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 11:21 am:

    == who you assume prefer the empty park as it is==

    I haven’t seen that assumption made.


  47. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 12:08 pm:

    Do you ever have an honest disagreement with anyone without pulling out your blowtorch?


  48. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 12:18 pm:

    ===Do you ever have an honest disagreement===

    When have you had one of those?

    If you were being honest about the Bears, you’d be against it, the state giving handouts, choosing winners and losers, high cost of union labor…

    You’re dishonest… and *now* you’re honest?

    Sure, Jan


  49. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 12:29 pm:

    ==Do you ever have an honest ==

    lol. That’s pretty rich coming from someone who is dishonest himself.


  50. - Luck Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 14, 23 @ 1:35 pm:

    What did I say that was dishonest?

    The Mc Caskey’s or whoever they sell the team to in the next few years will definitely build a new stadium in Arlington Heights and they will work something out with the government


  51. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Mar 15, 23 @ 5:42 am:

    ===The Mc Caskey’s or… will work something out with the government===

    Talk to the Ricketts, get back to me.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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