Blog Entry

Hawaii doesn't want to pay NFL for Pro Bowl

Posted on: June 10, 2011 9:09 am
Edited on: June 10, 2011 10:53 am
Hawaii doesn't want to pay for the Pro Bowl any more (Getty).Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Two years ago, the NFL experimented with the timing and location of the Pro Bowl, playing the game a week before the Super Bowl in the same city as the Super Bowl (Miami). The next year, the Pro Bowl was back at Hawaii’s Aloha Stadium (and, incredibly, watched by a large number of people).

The one-year absence didn’t scare first-year Hawaii governor Neil Abercrombie, who’s come out and said he doesn’t want to honor the $4 million deal the state has to pay the NFL in order to play host to the game this year and next.

“You can't do things like give 4 million bucks to a $9 billion football industry and not give any money to children,” Abercrombie said, via the Tribune News Service. “You've got this spectacle of these multimillionaires and billionaires out there arguing about how they're going to divide it up, and then they come and ask us to bribe them with $4 million to have a scrimmage out here in paradise.

“We've got to get our values straight and our priorities straight.”

The game remains incredibly popular in Hawaii (when the NFL took the game to Miami, it broke a 30-year streak of sell-outs in Hawaii), and it continues to give the state a solid return on its $4 million investment. According to tourism officials, last year’s Pro Bowl attracted 17,000 visitors the state, and the game created $28.15 million in tourist spending and $3.07 million in state taxes.

And I’m sure if the NFL waived the $4 million fee, Abercrombie would be happy to welcome the Pro Bowl back into his state.

Former Honolulu mayor Mufi Hanneman – who negotiated with the NFL to keep the game in that city – said the game is an economic booster. Abercrombie knows of another way to raise funds, though – same-sex civil unions.

“We'll get more out of civil unions in a weekend then we'll get out of those guys,” he said. “We're going to market. Don't worry about marketing.”

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Category: NFL
Tags: Pro Bowl

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 8, 2012 12:56 pm

Hawaii doesn't want to pay NFL for Pro Bowl

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 2, 2012 11:51 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Jul 6, 2008
Posted on: June 10, 2011 12:07 pm

Hawaii doesn't want to pay NFL for Pro Bowl

It's not what you're "ponying up"... it's the the profit margin in the big picture- if this event is stimulating the local econony, as it apparently has shown to be doing, it seems foolish to eliminate it by looking a gift horse in the mouth. Perhaps a negotiation could be called to negotiate a new new number- but after 30 years doesn't it seem like the predessors thought this through already and it panned out in a positive manner- this could be a big gamble with a losing outcome- the tourisits as well as the already over-paid players themselves attend this event do they not? Do those over-priced players contribute to the local economy? Are many of them spoiled and already seek top end amenities wherever they go anyhow? You know how much it costs to be treated like royalty in Hawaii? A perty perty penny... as long as theres a profit to be made this decision is a mistake..

Since: Aug 4, 2008
Posted on: June 10, 2011 11:10 am

Hawaii doesn't want to pay NFL for Pro Bowl

What is the $4 million used for? The last time I checked on a group or person that wanted to entertain someone it was not to go to the city and say, I am coming to your city. In order for me to come to your city you are gonna have to pony up $50,000.

The way it normally work is the entertainer would come to the city. They would then find a venue to hold their event, pay the rental fee for the venue. After they would have secured the place to hold the event they would advertise and market the event.

By marketing the event they would attract potential client that would want to see this event. Based on those individuals they would attempt to earn enough to pay the performer (s), any help needed in setting up the venue or other necessary things to ensure they event was successful.

What ever is left over is called profit.

The same profit margin would be there for the city even if they did not pay the $4 million, those coming to the event would still need hotel accommodations as well as places to eat and shop.

Now who do you think is attending this Hawaiian affair? It is certainly not Joe Smuck working at the Chrysler plant in Detroit, nor is it the local police Sgt working in the Los Angeles Police Department.

Nope it is those affluent individuals that make this an annual event, brag to their friends and neighbors at the country club about how long they  have been going to this event, staying at the same hotel for the last 15 years and know the hotel manager by name. Oh by the way we call it a business trip and all expenses are written off our federal income tax.
Now why is the NFL getting $4 million up front and from the local government? It is the government officials that cannot see that paying out tax payers money for an event such as the NFL coming to their city to play a game is simply not the way to do things.   

The players take their wives and girlfriends since this is only an exhibition game. Half of them don’t even practice.


Since: Jan 11, 2007
Posted on: June 10, 2011 10:16 am

Hawaii doesn't want to pay NFL for Pro Bowl

I see the logic in what he's saying; that it's ridiculous to pay $4 Million to the NFL when they already want to be there anyway.  But that is a short-sighted and narrow minded point of view.  The reality is the NFL will end up playing the game elsewhere.  They're not going to be strong armed into giving away a truckload of cash just so a politician can make waves.  The NFL is a business providing an entertainment service, and they will continue to operate as a business.  Businesses aren't known for giving their services away for free, regardless of how wealthy they may already be. 

The argument about giving money to children/community/whatever?  Now that is ridiculous. 
What makes more sense; to hold and distribute $4 Million, or invest $4 Million and get back $3 Million in cash PLUS over $20 Million poured into the community?  It's this kind of short sighted thinking from elected officials (regardless of party affiliation) that we (the people) are continually paying for. 

Since: Aug 31, 2006
Posted on: June 10, 2011 9:39 am

Hawaii doesn't want to pay NFL for Pro Bowl

Much as I love football and have no issue at all with civil unions/gay marriage, I don't think the mayor is doing the cause of civil unions any favors by telling the world he'd rather have civil unions than football.

It's simple math, make back most of the $4 million in taxes associated with the game and you bring in 7 times that in revenue to the private sector?  Yet you turn it down because of the $4 million outlay?  People who do that kind of math must have been the ones counting votes in your last run.

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