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Steelers: Luke Bryan concert netted $650K for Pittsburgh in taxes, fees

| Wednesday, June 25, 2014, 11:13 p.m.
Luke Bryan performing 'Rain is A Good Thing ' during the 'My Kind of Night Tour' in Pittsburgh at Heinz field Saturday, June 21, 2014.

Pittsburgh had a mess on its hands from the Luke Bryan concert, but the city gained $650,000 in taxes and fees from the event, the Steelers said on Wednesday.

The Steelers, which manage Heinz Field, released the city's concert take after complaints from Mayor Bill Peduto's office about costs of cleaning up mounds of garbage left behind Saturday by 50,000 fans, plus police and paramedic response to emergency situations.

Peduto spokesman Tim McNulty said the fact that the city benefited financially does not excuse garbage dumping on the North Shore.

“Amusement taxes are one of the few ways the city is compensated for ensuring a safe and clean environment for concert-goers,” he said. “Paying them doesn't give ticket holders license to turn the city into a toilet and project that image to the nation.”

But most of the garbage was on stadium lots owned by Alco Parking, which paid for the cleanup, and the Steelers paid for extra emergency services staff at the concert, Alco owner Merrill Stabile and city Controller Michael Lamb said.

Pittsburgh has not tallied its costs, McNulty said.

“To me, that's just part of the cost of doing business,” Lamb said. “In this case, the bulk of the costs were borne by the lot owners and the concert holders.”

The Steelers estimated the concert produced nearly $500,000 in direct tax revenue and $150,000 in fees paid to public agencies.

Lamb said the city would receive proceeds from a 5 percent amusement tax on every ticket sold, a 37.5 percent parking tax from every vehicle and a 3 percent facility usage fee from the entertainers. Fans in some parking lots paid as much as $40 a car to park near Heinz Field.

“Between the facility usage fee, the parking tax and the amusement tax, I wouldn't be surprised if that number is $500,000,” he said. “We estimated that every Penguin playoff game was bringing in $150,000.”

Seating capacity for hockey games at the Consol Energy Center is 18,387.

The Steelers noted that the team's figures don't include estimates for economic impact generated by hotels, restaurants and other venues.

“We'd like to thank Luke Bryan and his team for the opportunity to showcase Heinz Field, the North Shore and the city of Pittsburgh,” said Jimmie Sacco, executive director of stadium management at Heinz Field.

Staff Writer Bobby Kerlik contributed to this report. Bob Bauder is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-765-2312 or bbauder@tribweb.com.

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