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If Clark Hunt wants Chiefs stadium renovations, he should use his own money instead of forcing residents to fund it. (Op-Ed)

Residents of Jackson County, Missouri, voted down a sales tax extension that would have helped to fund a new downtown ballpark along with major renovations to Arrowhead Stadium. More than 58% of voters ultimately rejected the plan. The Chiefs have threatened to leave Kansas City if the voters did not approve this plan, but many voters do not care, as they cannot even afford tickets to the games. Another issue is the location, as it would displace residents and shut down local small businesses. If Clark Hunt wants to renovate and build a large parking lot for tailgates, well, he should use his own damn money rather than holding Kansas City residents responsible for the cost. It is cruel to threaten to leave the city because the people do not want to be held hostage by high tax rates.

“It’s not that we mind paying the three-eighths-cent sales tax. I think the problem is putting the stadium where it is,” Deirdre Chasteen, a voter from Independence, Missouri told AP News, “We’re saying don’t ruin businesses that have been established down there for years.” Many of the businesses have not even reached a sales deal with the club, and other businesses and residents were concerned about traffic congestion and parking for those not attending the game.

A video posted on The Kansas City Chiefs Facebook page uses players to beg the people to vote yes. If you have enough money to produce a high-quality advertisement featuring top NFL, well, you can pay for the damn renovations yourself.

“We would not be willing to sign a lease for another 25 years without the financing to properly renovate and reimagine the stadium,” Chiefs owner Clark Hunt, said before Tuesday’s vote, “The financing puzzle is very important to us to make sure we have enough funds to do everything we’ve outlined.” Pay for it yourself, Clark Hunt. Holding an entire city hostage under your demands for a higher sales tax is ridiculous. The average American is living paycheck to paycheck, the price of groceries has skyrocketed, and not everyone in Kansas City cares about sports.


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