When the Atlanta Braves announced this morning that they would be moving out of the city to nearby Cobb County to get a new stadium in 2017, the team was quick to point out how much money they would bring with them to Cobb County. "The economic benefits from the new stadium will ripple throughout the region," reads their website, specifically explaining that it would create 5,227 jobs and $235 million in payroll. Partly because of those big job guarantees, Cobb County has offered to pay $450 million toward the new stadium, over two-thirds of the total $672 million price tag, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. (Update: the Braves organization denies that Cobb will provide $450 million, and writes that the county's exact contribution is still being finalized.)
However, significant economics research suggests that residents will be getting a "really crappy deal," according to Neil deMause, the co-author of Field of Schemes: How the Great Stadium Swindle Turns Public Money Into Private Profit. "The notion of stadiums as an economic catalyst is a complete myth," he told The Atlantic Wire. "The notion that you are somehow going to get economic benefits from a new stadium and a baseball team in your county that is going to make up for a loss of $450 million. ... Any economist in the country is going to say there's no possible way to earn that back," he explained.