From 'Cat Killer' Probe to New Marlins Stadium: 5 Biggest Wastes of Taxpayer Money in 2010
|We all love baseball, but did we all really have to pay for a new stadium when Marlins owners had plenty of cash on hand?|
Now Carlos Alvarez is facing a fierce recall campaign fueled by bitterness over his tax-heavy budget and leased BMWs. The county mayor has been forced to fight for his job like a University of Miami student clutching the last can of Four Loko at the local Kwik-E-Mart.
The pitchfork-wielding masses are out for blood. As always, Riptide is here to chum the waters with a review of the top five wastes of local taxpayer money in 2010:
|"You can never say that it's a waste of taxpayers' money," Alvarez recently said of the $1 million plus 'cat killer' investigation. "That's just the nature of police work."|
• Tunnel to nowhere: What costs a billion dollars and is as wide as a football field? (No Oprah jokes, please.) Answer: the new Port of Miami tunnel under construction off the MacArthur Causeway. The idea was drawn up in the early '90s, before a six-lane bridge drastically reduced port-related traffic downtown. Now the juggernaut can't be stopped despite its obsolescence. Total cost: as much as $450 million to local taxpayers.
• Fishy stadium: Remember when Florida Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria and team president Dave Samson came to the city with open hands, demanding help to build a new baseball stadium? Financial statements leaked this past summer show the Marlins actually had an operating profit of nearly $50 million in 2008 and 2009. All said and done, taxpayers got punked to the tune of nearly $500 million.
|Despite the winning smile, Patches is not allowed to ask for money anywhere near LeBron James' new workplace|
• Dropped signal: In 2006, the Miami Beach City Commission signed a $5 million contract with IBM to create a Wi-Fi network for the art deco island. Four years later, even the bums on Lincoln Road still prefer to tap into Starbucks's signal than connect to the city's shoddy system.