Texas motorsports enthusiasts are no doubt excited about the Circuit of the Americas. Formula One racing, along with MotoGP, will have a new home in Austin, and the United States Grand Prix is sure to attract fans and fan money. Some, however, are not thrilled at the spending decisions being made by Texan lawmakers, as they apparently feel though the money being spent to bring racing to the state could otherwise be used to help teachers keep their jobs.

How much has Texas pledged to bring F1 racing to Austin? According to Bloomberg, Texas Comptroller Susan Combs has signed off to shell out $25 million per year through 2022. That's a massive chunk of change, and some are not too thrilled at this idea as at the same time, 100,000 teachers could be losing their jobs.

That $25 million per year figure would not be enough to save 100,000 jobs. However, it could save the jobs of 500 teachers earning $48,000 per year. While CotA is bound to bring serious tourist and racing-fan money to the Austin area, should Texas be spending $25 million when teachers across the state are likely to find themselves out of work soon? Have your say in Comments.


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  • 65 Comments
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      Mike McKinnon
      • 3 Years Ago
      The thing is, the special events trust fund is only for special events. If the state reneges on its commitment to spend $25m on the F1 project, the money won't magically be re-appropriated to fund teachers' salaries. It'll just stay in the trust, waiting for the next event. Interestingly, Rep. Dan Patrick, who's leading the charge against the incentives, had no problem taking about $14M in March for the Final Four games held in his district. My question is, if the politicians are so against public money being used to support potentially revenue-generating events, then why have this fund at all? Why support ANY economic development programs that involve subsidies or incentives?
      BigMIKE
      • 3 Years Ago
      As someone who not only lives in Texas, but in Austin where the track is being built, I am happy we are getting the track, but appalled that the state is "investing" in it. With all of the million and billion -aires in the city, not to mention the state, there is no reason the state should be involved at all. Screw incentives. If you want to build here, then build here, but don't use blackmail to force our hands at the lost of potential revenue. My wife is an educator in the public school system and she is hating having to deliver bad news to deserving teachers. Yes, some need to go, but that is no where near the majority of the ones being let go. I am not as affected since I teach in a private university, but I have a lot of friends and acquaintances that do teach in the public school system and some good people are losing their jobs. And yes, the aid being sent to other countries is distasteful, but it has nothing to do with Texas because those are federal funds. These are state funds that are being used, not federal funds. Every politician (left or right) hands us a load of bull when campaigning about how important public education is to them and none of them do a damn thing about it. None of them. Do I want to see this track built? Yes. I want to watch some races and perhaps get in a track day or two, as well. But we really need to get our priorities straight.
        Basil Exposition
        • 3 Years Ago
        @BigMIKE
        Very well said.
        A_Guy
        • 3 Years Ago
        @BigMIKE
        I also live here and I feel EXACTLY the same way you do. I'm not a teacher and I love cars, but something here is just out of whack. Initially I was thinking it would bring money to the area, but Austin PAYING 25 million a year until 2022!?! I'm effing confused!
          DrEvil
          • 3 Years Ago
          @A_Guy
          A_Guy: What do you Texans know about the new Cowboys Stadium? The money didn't come out of Jerry Jones pocket, public funds here too. The next time you stay at a hotel in Dallas, take a closer look at your hotel bill. They cleverly slap everyone who comes to Dallas with a tax to pay for that stadium, don't know what the residents have to pay, but the visitors sure has hell gets fleeced.
          Sportsracer
          • 3 Years Ago
          @A_Guy
          What's out of whack is the money that is poured into HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL. Where is the outrage over that?
      longducdong
      • 3 Years Ago
      Cant say I blame the teachers. However, on a side note, some tenured teachers deserve to take a long walk off a short plank.
      AzureStarline
      • 3 Years Ago
      Rightfully so. No one in my family is a teacher, so this isn't biased in that way, but seriously? They should be irked.
        Zoom
        • 3 Years Ago
        @AzureStarline
        You may not have a direct relationship to a teacher, but your neighborhood surely benefits when kids are being properly educated. The town. The county. The state. And the country all benefit when the kids are well-educated.
      Dave
      • 3 Years Ago
      They should be upset. F1 is a loser in the US.
        Jason Bird
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Dave
        Nascar can't even sell out races these days...and they expect yet another F1 venue to work?
      BimmerFerret
      • 3 Years Ago
      I would bet a million...make that $25 million if this was Football related, this project would be approved and funded without question.
        David
        • 3 Years Ago
        @BimmerFerret
        Your not far off. City of Anaheim is offering $75 million to have the Sacramento Kings relocated to the Honda Stadium in Anaheim, even though they are facing about 100 layoffs. Consider the fact that southern California already has two basketball teams while the U.S. is not part of the F1 schedule, not to mention the basketball team costs more money to the City while also facing less layoffs than Texas. But for some reason, they don't seem to care as much in Anaheim. They just want a basketball team even though theres already 2 teams 25 miles away.
      mylexicon
      • 3 Years Ago
      $25M is not the problem. The Texas Special Event fund has been used in the past to subsidize events of this nature. The problem is giving $25M to a foreign corporation to help them penetrate the US entertainment industry. I'm a Texan, and I want for our state to continue to prosper, but this is an idiotic move by the legislature. Deals with Bernie do not have a good probability of success, and F1 is one of the least stabile sports on the planet. With a little luck, F1 will fail to get a new Concorde signed, this deal with the FOM will be terminated, and we can renogitate for something much better with a breakaway series.
      graphikzking
      • 3 Years Ago
      Will this track be open for my MR2 spyder anytime soon? :) I can easily see spending $1000 for a long weekend in Texas. My buddy drives his motorcycle to Ohio 4 times a year and NJ twice a year to "race". (from Phila suburbs) These things generate revenue. Just like Malls generate shoppers and the stores(restaurants) around the malls love having a mall nearby. No restaurant within eyesight of a mall isn't packed on a Friday or Saturday night. Same can be said about this racetrack. Every hotel, car rental, gas station. GAS TAXES:TEXAS GETS 20 CENTS FOR EVERY GALLON OF GAS THESE PEOPLE BUY. RENTAL CAR TAX: Every time you rent a car at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, you are paying a tax that helps reduce local property taxes in Euless, Texas, the airport's home city. You are also paying for new NHL and NBA arenas. HOTEL TAX: For example, in Houston there is 6 percent state tax, 7 percent Houston tax, 2 percent Harris County tax and 2 percent Harris County - Houston Sports Authority tax. That's 11% hotel tax everynight. The money will come back in.. or generate more jobs so they can tax more and spend more (on stuff we DON'T approve of).
      Hazdaz
      • 3 Years Ago
      TX, FL and AZ... nuke them or let them cede and the rest of the country would sure as hell be a better place.
        dukeisduke
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Hazdaz
        Yeah, we'll secede, and keep our oil and gas, thank you very much. :-)
        John Hughan
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Hazdaz
        You've clearly never been to Austin.
          DrEvil
          • 3 Years Ago
          @John Hughan
          I've never been to Austin, but I see quite a bit of the city on the TV show "The First 48 Hours"
      Aquila
      • 3 Years Ago
      You people be nice. The Texas Legislature has been very busy writing laws that allow students to bring guns to class, so back off okay?
        dukeisduke
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Aquila
        I know there were some folks that wish they'd been able to carry on that awful day at VA Tech.
          Hazdaz
          • 3 Years Ago
          @dukeisduke
          Why? So more innocent kids could have been killed? Or are they going to pretend like they would have known the "good guys" from the "bad guys". :rolleyes: Typical delusions of grandeur from those nuts that think they'll bust into a bad situation and make everythign all right. Riiiight.
        ErikV
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Aquila
        The same students that meet all the requirements and have a concealed weapons permit to carry outside of class, just a change of scenery, whats the big deal. Look at the mass shootings we've had in the US, Texas A&M, Virginia Tech, all at schools that are "gun free" zones..... ya those "gun free zone" signs really saved some lives
      FredZ
      • 3 Years Ago
      This is comparing apples and oranges. The teachers and education have a budget to deal with and the state can adjust accordingly. Yes they are spending money to bring in F1, but they are doing it as a revenue generating and job creation enterprise. You have to spend money to make money and raising Austin's profile will only help with this. Additionally, there are direct jobs that are being created. Those jobs generate tax revenue. It is always so funny to me that people get bent of shape that tax revenue doesn't go to this or that. How do you think that revenue is created?
        Patrick
        • 3 Years Ago
        @FredZ
        Exactly. It's not like there was $25million dollars earmarked for teachers that they decided to spend on F1. People just use the education system when it comes to allocating money because it's hard to argue without sounding like you are a jerk trying to take money from kids. Realistically though, the government has a lot of roles and not all of it can go to superintendents and tenured teachers.
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