Letter: County’s priorities not same as Braves’

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Julio Teheran throws in the first inning against the Houston Astros in a spring training baseball game, Friday, March 25, 2016, in Kissimmee, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Julio Teheran. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

I was reading the April 9 Local section, and two stories caught my eye: one concerning the proposed sales tax (“Gardens officials vote to oppose hike in sales tax”) and the other on building another spring training stadium for baseball (“Braves want county’s largest park”).

Where it got interesting were the numbers. Using the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches as a template, let’s take a look: $113 million from the state bed tax, $50 million from the state (for a $144 million complex, by the way). One of the principals involved estimates 144,000 fans attending over the course of a year.

So we are spending $163 million in state money for 144,000 to watch spring training baseball. I’m sure “jobs creation” would be the rebuttal here, but some will be temporary workers … you know, spring training.

We have a lot more than 144,000 people involved in the school system and using infrastructure in Palm Beach County. So before you ask for more tax money to fix these problems, I suggest people in government start drawing the right priorities.

I’m sure the money is earmarked for certain items. However, like the Atlanta Braves lobbyist said concerning the stadium: It might be time to get “very creative” with our tax dollars, as far as how we’re spending them.

MIKE HUNDLEY, WEST PALM BEACH

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