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The mayor’s proposed 2012-13 budget lays out how much taxpayers subsidize public facilities. The total comes to slightly more than $2 million, relatively flat compared to this fiscal year. Is that too much money for the quality of life we get in return? Which places you think are most worthwhile?

Riverside Convention Center – $642,800

This amount includes the operation of Pier 45 at the port. The county’s subsidy of the convention center, through the hotel/motel tax is $795,000.

Pier 45 – $178,384

Otherwise known as “Convention Center North,” Pier 45 is run by the convention center as a restaurant and event space. Mayor Bob Duffy wasn’t comfortable leasing out the facility to a private entity, a costly decision. On the other hand, it’s not clear if anyone could have made it work without a subsidy.

Port of Rochester (Terminal Building) – $341,600

The city only collects $99,000 in rent from the tenants, not enough to pay for upkeep. It’s a beautiful facility and I love the clean bathrooms. Perhaps the city will be able to up the retail offerings and rental income when the area is further developed.

War Memorial – $491,300

I hope the budget includes money for new brass letters on the outside of the building. Since I took the picture to the right, more letters have disappeared. I suspect they were sold for scrap.

Soccer Stadium – $416,800

The hope is to have the Rhinos pick up more of the tab as years go by. Should we be holding our breath?

High Falls Center – $186,800

This includes a restaurant, museum and event space. At one point the city explored selling the facility, but that’s not mentioned anywhere in the budget.

(In case you’re wondering, Frontier Field is a county-owned facility not subsidized by the city.)

3 Responses to “Convention Center North” & Other Subsidies

  1. Ya know, you just don’t get like this a clear and simple breakdown of what the subsidies are for public liesure facilities operating deficits in the local paper.

    Lately I’m reading the Buffalo News, but this kind of presentation is the berries. I would have figured the subsidies were far greater. Being the old callous bureaucrat that I am, I know for sure these are most likely operasting budget deficits only, not including ongoing debt service on bonded funds and cash capital for facility improvements.

    For instance, parking garages very rarely are fully costed with their share of debt service allocated as part of a total operating budget. Nor are capital improvement costs ever passed-on to the parking gargage contract operators for them to factor into approved parking fees.

    If cash capital or debt service costs were ever truly allocated in operating subsidy figures, folks would really start to realized the true cost per service unit for kicking a ball around in an empty stadium with no roof.

  2. May 22, 2012 at 12:53 pm theodore kumlander responds:

    the war memorial is the only place woth funding. remember it was NYS who kicked in 40 million to build the riverside conven center and left rochester the bill for running it. the soccer stadium was wrong right from the start. devloping the water front was a good idea, except that Dom Delucia nd his partner were the only ones who ever made any profit off of that or the fast ferry, the city got the bill and is still paying. which is why i moved to ontario county.

  3. May 23, 2012 at 3:54 pm Kevin Yost responds:

    The War Memorial, Sahlen’s Stadium, and the Convention Center should all be turned over to the Greater Rochester Sports Authority, who take care of Frontier Field. The Ferry Terminal, a.k.a. “Convention Center North,” needs to be turned over to the R-GRTA, as does the Greater Rochester Airport.

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