Miami Dolphins Stadium Renovation: A Field of Schemes
|Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, left, with Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jack Seiler and Ron Book, second from right. To the left of Book is his daughter Lauren, and that's apparently Jimmy Buffett in the middle.|
I think it's safe to say that the Miami Dolphins' plan to soak Broward taxpayers for a stadium renovation is dead. But Dolphins lobbyist Ron Book is crafty -- we'll see what he can do.
Dolphins' owner Stephen Ross has kept a lot of Wayne Huizenga's old employees around (inlcluding Tony Sparano) since taking over the team, but few are more important than Book. Remember, Book was one of Hizzy's lobbyists back in the late 1990s when the Legislature granted the team a $60 million tax break to help it renovate the stadium for baseball.
And there are some who are open to it. Interestingly the politician who appears to be the idea's biggest cheerleader is a guy photographed with Book and Ross above, Mayor Jack Seiler. "There is certainly a tremendous value of the Super Bowl being here and the Orange Bowl being here," he told the Sun-Sentinel. "To have a venue that attracts great sporting events is certainly a boon for our tourism business, and we should see what all the details are... There is no question that Broward County benefits from the Super Bowl."
You got to love the shady sales job. Why would Seiler bring up the Orange Bowl in this argument? I know he's got a long history with that game, but it's got nothing to do with this issue. There's no risk of losing that game.
Inside, see a couple of more shots of Book schmoozing at a Dolphins game and find out which future Hall of Fame football player is getting all his money back from the Scott Rothstein bankruptcy.
Here's Book with recently retired CNN talker Larry King and black-hatted U.S. Congresswoman Frederica Wilson (who was a state legislator when the photo was taken):
Book and Cooper City Commish John Sims also posed for the cameras:
I hear Sims works on the sidelines during the games running the NFL replay, so at least he has an official excuse to be there.
In other football news, it looks like Pro Bowl defensive lineman Warren Sapp is going to get all his money back from the Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler law firm. Bankruptcy trustee Herbert Stettin approved an $82,789 award for Sapp, who had money from a legal settlement sitting in an RRA trust account when Rothstein's Ponzi scheme imploded.
Sapp was one of 37 non-investors in the Ponzi whose awards, totaling more than $1 million, were approved Wednesday, according to court filings.