Letter to the editor: Let's trade Billionaire Bob
I applaud the editorial “Pirates owner ignores fans' anger at his peril” and Kevin Gorman's excellent “Pirates owner Bob Nutting now face of franchise,” about “Bottom-line Bob.” Each piece highlights fan disappointment and concludes that fans have few recourses in getting Billionaire Bob to improve fan and taxpayer return on investment with PNC Park.
The articles and 50,000-signature petition will do little to change the business approach, as evidenced by Pirates President Frank Coonelly's recent “speech” on a local radio station. Fans are wasting their time directing their ire toward Nutting. Instead, they should take to task nonelected Pittsburgh Sports & Exhibition Authority (SEA) officials to amend the PNC Park lease to include performance incentives similar to many other business arrangements.
Why do we have the SEA? Because Pittsburgh taxpayers contributed $176 million of the $216 million — almost 82 percent — to construct PNC Park. This is a massive public subsidy to the 10th richest owner in baseball — money that could have been spent educating our youth, housing our homeless or plowing our snow-covered streets.
The SEA has a fiduciary duty to oversee the use of taxpayer money. If that doesn't work, maybe the fans can trade Billionaire Bob to the Dallas Mavericks for Mark Cuban and “future considerations.”