It should come as no surprise the Bengals came out strongly against a Wall St. Journal article we mentioned this morning that called the agreement to build Paul Brown Stadium one of the worst ever struck by a local government.
The Bengals sent the Journal a five-page response to the article, and forwarded that response to PFT. It’s a two-page letter, with a three-page addendum simply listing the factual inaccuracies they believe are in the article. (Some of them are convincing.) They accuse the article of bias, although clearly the Bengals have more of an agenda than the reporter.
The gist of the letter can be summed up by the following sentence from Bengals VP Troy Blackburn.
“In the 15 years since the deal was put in place, a funny thing happened on the way to the forum: the local government took money intended for the stadia and spent it on other projects,” Blackburn writes.
Some of these projects, as listed by Blackburn, include a new highway project, an urban redevelopment project, and enhanced funding for public schools. (Silly stuff like that.)
Basically, the Bengals are blaming the government for the deal. We don’t disagree with the premise that it’s essentially the government’s fault for bending to the will of the Bengals and misappropriating funds.
There are simply more important things for government to spend on than sports stadiums. We suspect the NFL would find a way to survive without so much public help in the future.
UPDATE: On a related note, the Hamilton County will vote Wednesday whether to spend $307,000 to replace the Bengals’ instant replay system. Because that would be a crazy thing for the team to pay for.