The deal for the Bucks arena was finally announced. The only significant new detail that was revealed that hadn’t already leaked is that the owners – not the taxpayers – will be on the hook for any cost overruns for the project. That’s very good. Other than that, nothing has really changed since this weekend.
As a side note, this was a masterful bit of politics by Governor Walker. He managed to hold a press conference announcing a significant deal for economic development with his only two real Democratic rivals – Milwaukee Mayor Barrett, who ran against Walker for governor, and Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele, who is widely believed to be sowing the seeds to succeed Walker – at his side praising it. And the press conference was in Madison – Walker’s home turf. Furthermore, Americans for Prosperity, a group funded by the Koch brothers, opposes the deal, thus giving Walker some political separation on the national stage. Irrespective of what happens to the deal, today was a win for Governor Walker.