Waukesha politician campaigns on anti-arena tax platform

CREATED May 20, 2014

  • Print
  • Play

MILWAUKEE - Waukesha Alderman Aaron Perry works in Journal Sentinel sales, right across the street from the Bradley Center.  He says Milwaukee needs a new arena and Milwaukee County should shoulder the taxpayer cost.

"I will never support a regional tax on Waukesha County to pay for a new Bucks stadium," Perry told TODAY'S TMJ4 reporter Tom Murray.  "I believe it's a good idea, I just don't believe it's a good idea for the entire region to pay for it through taxes."
Perry is so confident that he holds the popular view, that he is campaigning for state Assembly as an anti-arena tax candidate.
Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce president Tim Sheehy is a strong advocate for a new Bucks home building.  
"This will require regional support because there is a huge regional benefit," Sheehy said.  "This is an important asset and, as we figure this out, I believe the political leadership is going to come."
Politicians have been reluctant to go all-in on backing a taxpayer investment in a NBA replacement for the Bradley Center.
Attorney Dan Adams is running for a Milwaukee state Assembly seat.  Like many this early in the game, he offers only vague support.
"We're a great city.  We're a thriving city.  We don't need anybody's pity, but we do need regional buy in," Adams said.  "We have to keep all options on the table.  If that includes a public financing option, that should be on the table as well."
Senator Herb Kohl and the new Bucks owners have pledged $100 million each to pay for a new arena.  There have been no other firm commitments toward the total estimated $500 million cost.