HomeNewsStadiaAmerican FootballUSA

NFL hits out at Republican stadium funding plan

The NFL American football league has expressed its opposition to a proposed government tax plan that could require sports teams to contribute more of their own money to stadium construction projects.

The bill was introduced last week in the U.S. House of Representatives and would result in a ban on tax-exempt, public-purpose bonds for professional sports stadia.

The NFL has hit out at the proposal, insisting that the building of new stadia enhances cities’ economic development. The league feels that federal tax breaks should continue to be granted to teams.

“You can look around the country and see the economic development that’s generated from some of these stadiums,” NFL spokesman Joe Lockhart said, according to the Reuters news agency.

“These sorts of infrastructure projects have a long history and the benefits of them are obvious in many of our communities around the country, so we will continue to make our opposition known on that.”

The NFL and the US government have been at loggerheads in recent weeks, with President Donald Trump taking exception to some players kneeling during the pre-match national anthem to protest racial bias in the criminal justice system.

Construction work is currently underway on a new Las Vegas-based stadium for the Oakland Raiders, while work has also begun on a new venue in Inglewood, California that will be shared by the Los Angeles Rams and Chargers.

Lockhart would not be drawn on the impact the bill could have on the Raiders’ new stadium. “That is a hypothetical at this point and we’d have to see how the final bill comes out,” he said.

“What gets proposed out of the writing committee from the party in control very often is not what is eventually signed into law, so we’ll have to see where that goes.”

Mercedes-Benz Stadium (pictured), home of the Atlanta Falcons, is the newest NFL stadium, with the 71,000-capacity venue having opened in August.