Jun 10, 2013
Last month, the commission that runs the state-owned Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum agreed to lease the stadium to privately owned University of Southern California (USC).
This lease is a very lucrative deal for USC and a huge giveaway for the public. USC will control the stadium for 99 years without buying the property, and get nearly all of the Coliseum’s money- making assets, like naming and advertising rights, and ticket and concession receipts. But, if a catastrophe hits Los Angeles, like an earthquake damaging the stadium, taxpayers will foot the bill. In return, USC has only one promise: they will “renovate” the stadium, whatever that means.
Also, USC is seeking to control six potentially highly profitable state-owned parking lots next to the stadium, which now serve Los Angeles’ Exposition Park museums. This parking deal would drastically reduce attendance to the museums that educate the public, like the Science Center.
The private university USC is no different than any other corporation: these “free enterprises” are enriching their owners by grabbing public money.