Sid Hartman weighs in on the Minnesota Twins stadium debate. As I mentioned before, Mr. Hartman is a very vocal supporter of public funding for stadiums and arenas and he pulls out the usual arguments for public funding. Here is another argument:
As Johnson pointed out, not only will the baseball problem be solved if the plan is adopted, but the opportunity to build the stadium will provide millions of dollars in the purchase of building materials, and it will provide a lot of jobs for three or four years for a lot of construction workers who are now out of work.
I hadn't thought of this - the demand for building materials will increase in the Twin Cities, raising the prices paid by consumer of building materials. From the consumer's standpoint, this is a spillover cost of the stadium construction, and an implicit subsidy.
Just who will work on constructing a new stadium? Will it necessarily be the out-of-work construction workers? It will also provide work for construction workers who would have been working on projects elsewhere. I looked at this very issue when construction of the Edward Jones Dome and the Savvis Center were being built in St. Louis in the middle 1990's. I found no conclusive evidence that construction industry employment was any higher or lower during the periods in which the buildings were constructed. Why would Minneapolis be any different?