Saturday, April 16, 2016

Tax dollars at work: Blueclaws and Lakewood extend lease through 2055

$175k a year for 40 years!!!
LAKEWOOD, NJ - Your BlueClaws and Lakewood Township have agreed to a new lease and our fans will be happy to know that your BlueClaws will be here at FirstEnergy Park for the next 40 years. The lease extension, which runs through 2055, was announced today by Team President Joe Finley.

"This is a banner day for the BlueClaws and we are thrilled to be able to stay at FirstEnergy Park for the foreseeable future," said Finley, who has been the BlueClaws Team President since the club's inception. "The BlueClaws and the Township of Lakewood have had a tremendous relationship over the last 15 years and we look forward to many more great years of BlueClaws baseball in Lakewood."



The BlueClaws debuted in 2001 and have delivered another form of affordable, family entertainment to the area. The Jersey Shore community has responded, with over 6.4 million fans coming to FirstEnergy Park over the last 15 years. The team has led the South Atlantic League in attendance in each of their 15 seasons.

"Since 2001, our main goal has been to bring affordable, family fun to Lakewood and the Jersey Shore. This agreement ensures our commitment to the area and we look forward to being an active member of the Township and of Jersey Shore community for many years," said Finley.

On the field, BlueClaws fans have seen 69 former players go on to play in Major League Baseball and the team has won three South Atlantic League titles (2006, 2009, and 2010).

FirstEnergy Park is a state-of-the-art facility which includes 6,588 fixed seats, 16 Luxury Suites, two Party Decks, the Monmouth Medical Center Champions Club, three Investors Bank picnic areas, the 9,000 square-foot Dr. Bernard's Kids Zone, two grass berms, an indoor batting cage, and a 360-degree concourse.

27 comments:

  1. This stadium deal was negotiated behind closed doors in secrecy. The tax paying public whose hard earned money paid for ithad no say at all. to add insult to injury the Lakewood township committee wiped themselves clean from this fiasco by having the Lakewood industrial commission negotiate a sweetheart deal where the Blueclaws only pay $175K a year for 40 years while the team is profiting $13 million dollars a year!!! Lakewood Taxpayers are getting nothing in return. More so the money from the lease payment goes to the LIC coffers where they are now spending it to purchase airplane hangars for private jets at the Lakewood airport for some well connected individuals who have been forced out of Monmouth executive and need a place to park their plane. How much will the LIC charge rent for the space?? lets see the deals they pull off again

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  2. Bob Singer pulled it off he was close to bringing a Hockey stadium as well today that land is used for Cedarbridge corporate park.

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  3. Cedarbridge park was the Esnan for allowing the stadium.

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  4. Thank you Lakewood township for allowing the BlueClaws to find a home there. It is a place for baseball fans throughout Central Jersey to gather and enjoy America's pastime.

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    1. Ar whose expense?

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    2. It is a common expense. Our town certainly makes money with the sales tax for everything purchased at each game. It is also a public good, as all the neighboring towns pay taxes and receive state aid. It is a balancing act, and the stadium is our part. Truly a kiddush hashem that we may be part of a larger neighboring community.

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    3. common sense thievery to say it better. This deal was approved with no input by the taxpayers, the maintenance expenses over the last 15 years were in the millions paid for by Lakewood taxpayers while the team profited 13 million.

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  5. If the Township put the interests of the Town first, they could have sold that land for industrial/corporate use for an excess of $5 million and collected tax revenue well in excess of $200k per year.

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  6. The township could have sold a lot of parks and other public property and collected tax revenue. Obviously the township has a right to have public uses that dont collect revenue. You could say the township should
    sell Pine Park for millions of dollars. Why do yeshivaleit need tennis courts ? Well maybe the township felt that its good for the cultural needs of the eino yehudim to have a ball park ? They certainly also have rights.Its not only yidden who live here.Dont be do self centered that only yidden have rights in town. Besides. Eventually in 40 years the property will be available to be sold for many millions so it wasnt given away.

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    1. This was not a park it was tax money used to build a stadium that cost $30 million dollars for a private team. The locals dont benefit from it at all. The Blueclaws are paying peanuts for the lease while profiting and laughing all the way to the bank. The ones who profited here is Cedarbridge park developers who are now selling the land for a profit. The public had absolutely no say on this. Look what happened in Monsey the feds now got involved after it was discovered public funds were used to build a baseball stadium.

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    2. Some yeshivaleit attended the game yesterday, so clearly some in the town are benefiting.

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    3. Bubbeh maasehes

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  7. There is nothing wtong with using public funds for stadium.in Monsey they lued about the finances of the township ti sellbonds after the stadium was voted down by the voters in a referendum. Its totally different. If you dont like a stafium you can run gor public office and change things.

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  8. Who says the locals dont benefit. Jusy because you dont attend the games does not mean other local families dont eant to go. Dont be so into yourself.

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    1. which locals The mexicans who moved in in the last ten years and are already moving out?? The taxpayers were kept in the dark and we're not notified of the back room deals and negotiations until after the fact. Running for public office? are you kidding it's the same clowns in power for the last 15 years.

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    2. Yes you should run for office, or become a political activist. If it is the same people as 15 years ago, it is time to take a stand against the injustice. How else do we fix things? Surely they will not bow in response to my blog post.

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  9. Sorry to tell you there sre other people besides Jewish people living in this town. If you wouldnt be so self centered and think that everything has to inky he done fir Jrwidh people, then we would be better off. The non jews want a stadium. You dont like it then you can move.

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    1. What does Jewish pal have to do with anything. The issue is about the townships building a stadium with out taxpayers approval for a private minor league team.If locals enjoy going to games has nothing to do with this deal. why are the blueclaws paying less than market value for a venue this size and why was it locked in for 40 years. Why did Lakewood township pay millions in upgrading and maintenance of the facility for 15 years. Dies the town get paid for all outside events at the stadium? Answer the questions please.

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  10. How much revenue did Blueclaws generate for Lakewood township over the last 15 years. Where is the return on the taxpayers investment.

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  11. How much revenue did Blueclaws generate for Lakewood township over the last 15 years. Where is the return on the taxpayers investment.

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  12. Where is the return yo the taxpayer on all the township parks ? They could be sold for hundred million in taxes and give back money to the taxpayers. The answer is its a recretional need for some people even though many people would vote to sell the parks. The twp does not have to ask you permission to spend money on parks. The same thing some people enjoy having a ballclub and stadium and the twp doesnt have to ask you .even though yoy dont like it ir need it ,its too bad. You have no say

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    1. Keep spining and avoiding the issue you will convince no one. The stadium was not built for recreation to the locals it was officially paid for to generate revenue to the township. It was leased to the Blueclaws to play in and they are profiting off it. Comparing it to a local park is like apples and oranges. Bring in the feds let them decide.

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  13. The town needs more parks, on Sundays in the summer, the parks are like the streets in Lakewood, crowded and inusable.

    However the vast majority of the people who attend the games are not from Lakewood, the same can be said for the soccer fields.

    If they had made a large park that could benefit the residents of Lakewood as well as others, no one would have a problem, but to spend that kind of Township money, not State Money, on something that primarily benefits people not from this town is corrupt.

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  14. Your spouting nonsense. How could you say the stadium eas built to generate revenue. Any 5 year old can do the math that you dont spend millions ti generate so little money. It wss not built as a revenue generator. It was built for the prestige and recreation of having a pro ballclub which many of us want. Yes there was the hope of bringing in some revenue from fans spending in local stores ,but that was a side consideration. In Monsey they sold bonds based on false figures. Its like giving false income info when you apply for a loan. Thats fraud. In lakewood ,nobody gave any income figures for anything. Its totally different. Yoy know that but its more interesting ti make big accusations

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    1. You assert "It was built for the prestige and recreation of having a pro ballclub which many of us want"

      Lakewood is not in a financial position to have vanity, prestige, projects of this scale. ALL the roads in town are crumbling, there are not enough cross streets and thoroughfares to handle the traffic, and next school year the city is going to be facing a complete traffic shutdown.

      Additionally, the funds came from the UEZ program and are intended for "stimulates their growth by encouraging businesses to develop and create private sector jobs through public and private investment", if the baseball stadium was not sold as a revenue generating project, it would have been a misuse of those funds.

      As far as your assertion that "many of us" wanted this, then why was such a massive project not put up for a referendum by the public, why was the lease transferred from the Township to the Lakewood Industrial Commission?

      the claim of it being for recreation is laughable. the vast majority of attendees at games are not from Lakewood. If the intent was to create a recreational area, a park with play areas, basketball courts, open fields would have been far cheaper and served a much greater need.

      You are defending the indefensible.

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    2. Anyone in town can come to the games, they are open to the public. It is a fun, inexpensive outing for the whole family. And yes, you will meet people from outside of town no doubt, but they are good people just like us and just want to enjoy a game with their family too.

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  15. Here is an idea...if you don't like what the town committee is approving don't vote them in office. You have the right to vote so the residents of Lakewood are the ones that are putting these decision makers in place. Change that if you don't like what they are doing...remember we have the right to vote, so don't go blaming a private company for being smart about business blame your town leaders that "you" the community chose to make these decisions.

    Also, even if most of the residents of Lakewood do not attend the games, all that does is bring in additional revenue to your local businesses as people need places to eat and hangout before and after games.

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