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Miami Dolphins Stadium Renovation Was Failing at the Polls Before Tally Killed It

Categories: Politicks, Sports

When the House spiked a bill two weeks ago to let the Miami Dolphins raise bed taxes to fund a stadium renovation, team owner Stephen Ross went ballastic, lashing out at Speaker Will Weatherford for taking away Miami voters' chance to have a say on the project.

He shouldn't have bothered. Results released from early voting before the referendum was canceled in Tallahassee show Dade voters roundly defeating the renovation deal.

More than 60,000 ballots were cast by mail or at early voting sites last month, but Tallahassee had to authorize the public vote to raise bed taxes and back other subsidies to fund the $350 million project. When the bill died in the House, the election (which would have happened this week) died with it.

But County Mayor Carlos Gimenez ordered those early vote results be released anyway, and they show the Dolphins without much chance to get public support.

Nearly 35,000 votes went against the stadium deal -- about 57 percent of the total cast.

Is it possible the team could have made up the difference at the polls -- in part by throwing millions more into a pro-stadium campaign? Sure, anything's possible. Still, it's hard not to think team spokesman Eric Jotkoff is living in opposite land when he tells the Herald this morning: "These numbers simply validate our belief that had all of Miami-Dade voters had the opportunity to make their voices heard, we are confident the modernization of Sun Life Stadium would have prevailed."

We had 'em right where we wanted 'em!

The Fins managed to blow almost $10 million on the failed campaign, with $4.8 million going toward funding the election and another $4.5 million going to all those glossy mailers that stuffed your mailboxes last month.

That's just pocket change to a guy like Ross, who's worth $4 billion. Then again, $350 million is pocket change to a guy worth $4 billion, which is probably the exact reason this deal was doomed from the get-go.

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7 comments
Sabrina Anico
Sabrina Anico

^ exactly. Not just sports either, but we need great entertainment facilities in order I compete. Plus, our local economy desperately needs an influx of jobs. This would have spurred jobs in a really depressed area. I know that my profession informs me, but I'm so annoyed by residents who remain short sited with our facilities, dolphin stadium or mbcc or jgt.

Alex Anico
Alex Anico

^another mea culpa? Do you even get what this is about or how it works. City of Miami residents weren't gonna pay a dime. Way to hold a grudge like a two year old and screw the city from being a relevant sports town in the future...

Louis Wing
Louis Wing

I think we've had enough of the Miami stadium sales pitch. Let them walk away, we don't need another pro team's Mea Culpa.

mcaloon
mcaloon

Eric Jotkoff is a little clueless and not full of alot of common sense. 

mcaloon
mcaloon

Guess dolphins internal polls they said had them winning the amendment used the same pollsters from Romney and Carl Rove.

mcaloon
mcaloon

Private facility, let them fix it with private money. Local buisness restaurants and hotels will still be full

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