Miami Dade County Community Forum

Monday, June 22, 2009

Art Collector, Marty Margulies, on the Marlin's Ballpark

An Open Letter Sent June 11, 2009 to County Commissioners:

This is the ballpark deal that should have been. Finances for the San Francisco 49ers new stadium would go before the voters for final approval. The city will pay 8% of the $937 million development. The team owners pay 92% as well as any cost overruns. The city gets the revenue from naming rights and net revenue from concession sales and parking lots. The team pays roughly $1 million a year rent.

The Marlins situation is completely different. The owners of the Marlins and George Burgess are laughing at the stupidity of this huge giveaway to the detriment of the taxpayers. Forbes Magazine recently said Miami is in the top 10 of the country in corruption. You can also add stupidity to that. The commissioners that voted yes said they would not dip into the general fund. We now know that they will. We also know the county manager with his $180,000 a year lifetime pension plus hospitalization is the mastermind behind this, working in partnership with the Marlins attorneys.

We also know that the interest rate never mattered no matter how high it will be. They will get the bonds because of the general funds guarantee. The sad part is that the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce endorsed this taxpayer giveaway because they were not courageous enough to step forward and voice their objections to the one-sidedness of this deal. They sold out the community. The county would not even allow the residents they serve to vote and on top of it they voted for a no-bid contract which will approximate $500 million or better. No one even knows the financial status of the Marlins.

The public hearing was nothing but a charade with the two mayors, the Marlins owners and the county manager smirking because they knew the outcome “was in the bag” before the votes were cast. This is what happens when ignorant people get elected and have no concern for the residents. A community which ranks 49th in education despite a lottery, joblessness, homelessness, and huge healthcare deficits in favor of a privately owned baseball team shows where the priorities lie and the lack of leadership in this community.

(Hit above 49er document to enlarge it)


  1. Margulies has been a leader in the fight against funding the Marlins' stadium, and is very worthy of an orchid from UEL, but shuns the spotlight. I'm thanking him for his efforts here, along with Elvis Cruz and Grace Solares. The latter two have persisted against the stadium bond deal via the legal route.

  2. AnonymousJune 23, 2009

    Yes Margulies steps up to the plate on issues he believes in. Thank you Marty.

  3. AnonymousJune 25, 2009

    Something about this deal smells very bad, maybe it is Burgess.