Missouri Gov.-elect Eric Greitens said he opposes public funding for a proposed Major League Soccer stadium in downtown St. Louis, according to a statement released by his transition team Monday.
“This project is nothing more than welfare for millionaires,” Greitens said. “Right now, because of reckless spending by career politicians, we can’t even afford the core functions of government, let alone spend millions on soccer stadiums.
Greitens’ statement came one day before the state Development Finance Board vote was scheduled to vote on a request from the city of St. Louis for $40 million in tax credits to go toward the $200 million downtown stadium plan. Last week, legislation was introduced before the city’s Board of Aldermen that could ask city voters to approve up to $80 million for the stadium.
Representatives for SC STL, the private ownership group working with MLS to acquire a team here, did not comment on Greitens’ statement. SC STL spokesman Jim Woodcock said only that the tax credit issue remains on Tuesday’s board agenda.
Maggie Crane, spokeswoman for Mayor Francis Slay, responded by saying the public funding question is being put to voters to decide.