Taxpayers Federation questions Nenshi and Davison flipflop on arena funding
CALGARY, AB: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is questioning why two members of council, Mayor Naheed Nenshi and Coun. Jeff Davison, are now supportive of subsidizing the Flames given their previous statements.
In 2017, Mayor Nenshi was convinced the vast majority of Calgarians opposed tax dollars going to the Flames.
“The calls to our office, the emails, the comments have been, I would say, 99.999997 per cent saying please Mr. Bettman stay out of it and no, there should be no public money for this,” said Nenshi in 2017.
Leading up to the 2017 Municipal Election the Canadian Taxpayers Federation asked candidates, “Do you support spending public funds on a new arena for the Flames?”
Candidate Davison told the CTF that he didn’t support using tax dollars to pay for a new professional arena.
“No - We do not need to spend public funds on an arena however, we can structure a plan that creates a revenue stream back to the City that offsets and reduces future taxation requirements,” Davison stated in response to the CTF’s question.
“Why are the two council members who are leading the charge for a new tax-funded arena flipflopping on their previous statements?” asked Franco Terrazzano, Alberta Director for the CTF. “If anything you would think the circumstances have made it less desirable to give the Flames’ owners nearly $300 million.
“Last month, hundreds of Calgarians rallied at city hall demanding a fix to the property tax debacle and last night council cut funding for fire, police and transit services. Given Calgary’s current situation, why have Nenshi and Davison changed their minds about putting taxpayers’ money into an arena? If they believed Calgarians were opposed to putting taxpayers’ money into an arena in the past, why are they trying to short-circuit the consultation process to push through a deal now?”