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RNC boosters promised an economic boon for Milwaukee. Not everyone believes the hype - KFIZ News-Talk 1450 AM

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  cb  •  4 days ago  •  18 comments

By:   KFIZ News-Talk AM

RNC boosters promised an economic boon for Milwaukee. Not everyone believes the hype - KFIZ News-Talk 1450 AM
The Mothership in Bay View, decided to close its doors during the week of the event. Ricky Ramirez, the owner of the bar, said his staff made a collective decision to close during the convention and do private events instead. Ramirez said he gave his staff that option for their "mental health."

This is a rather long article. I have not included some information that may be fair and balanced in the interest of time, making a point, and getting to the discussion 'efficiently.'  Readers are encouraged to read the article at-length. 


S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


July 9, 2024

fiserv-rnc-2024.jpg

On Aug. 5, 2022, several of Milwaukee's top leaders and officials gathered in Chicago to announce the city had been picked as the official site of the 2024 Republican National Convention.

Hopes were high.

They still are.

Shortly after the announcement, Peggy Williams-Smith, president and CEO of VISIT Milwaukee, said in a statement she believes the city will put on the "best Republican National Convention yet."

Now, the event, which is expected to bring upwards of 50,000 visitors to the city, is set to take place next week. It will run from Monday through Thursday, when Republican delegates will formally name former President Donald Trump their presidential nominee. The candidate's speech will be followed by millions.

On a humid Tuesday in June, Ryan Cooke sat outside of Milwaukee Brat House, just around the corner from Fiserv Forum, where the convention will be held. He's been preparing for what he believes will be a boon for local businesses across the city.

"We're anticipating it creating a lot of hassle but bringing a lot of business," said Cooke, the director of operations for Heard Hospitality, which owns the Milwaukee Brat House and other restaurants and bars.

Cooke hopes the convention will bring his restaurants the same amount of business they saw during the Milwaukee Bucks' 2021 NBA Finals run. He's making sure they are fully stocked.

"We could not have been any busier (in 2021)," Cooke said. "We're hoping the RNC brings out something like that."

Supporters of the event have said it will bring around $200 million in economic benefits to the city. Williams-Smith has cited that figure several times, including last month during a Milwaukee Press Club event.

"The No. 1 reason that we did this is we knew it would generate significant short- and long-term economic impact," Williams-Smith said.

But not everyone believes the hype. In recent weeks, some business owners have publicly questioned whether the RNC will actually be that good for Milwaukee businesses. They include Gary Witt, the president and CEO of the Pabst Theater Group. Witt said he signed a contract with the RNC where the theater group agreed to book events for the convention.

"As the days and weeks and the months passed and we continuously had conversations and we awaited these multiple visits by people, they just really never happened," Witt said. "We had very few visits to the venues — nothing, really, of any consequence at all."

In late June, Witt said no events had been booked at the Riverside Theater, Pabst Theater, The Fitzgerald or the Vivarium. Turner Hall Ballroom has been rented out by CNN during the convention.

"Essentially, we sit today — as a lot of other spaces are in the city of Milwaukee — basically unused and empty during a time period when we were specifically told to hold those dates open," Witt said.

The economic impact of a huge event like a political convention includes not just direct spending by visitors during the four-day event but also the long-term benefits that can come with having a spotlight on the city. In addition to people staying in hotels and spending money at bars and restaurants, local officials hope hosting the RNC makes it more likely that other large-scale events will choose the city in the future.

Williams-Smith said the expanded Baird Center, formerly known as the Wisconsin Center, will also add more meeting space room for the RNC and other events.

"With hosting this event, and the expansion (of Baird Center), it's just the perfect storm of people being interested in coming to Milwaukee," she said.

But economic impact estimates are not an exact science, and some economists say the $200 million estimate is just that — an estimate.

"You'll see numbers being thrown around in the hundreds of millions of dollars of potential economic impact," said Victor Matheson, an economics professor at the College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts who authored a 2017 study on the impact of political conventions. "Going back and actually looking at data from cities that have hosted these events shows that the true economic impact is a fraction of that being claimed by both the Republicans and the Democrats when they have major conventions."

Matheson said the estimate doesn't account for the normal business that would have gone on regardless of the convention.

"These are wildly disruptive events," Matheson said. "Regular business can often plummet around these events."

Although tens of thousands of visitors are expected to flock to Milwaukee — many staying in hotels throughout southeast Wisconsin — Matheson said not all of those dollars translate into local impac t .

"Lots of the economic impact that occurs is not sticking in Milwaukee but is instead leaving town," Matheson said. "Higher hotel prices: That doesn't necessarily benefit Milwaukee. It benefits national headquarters of those hotel chains."

Witt said he was excited when the announcement came that Milwaukee had won the bid to host the event. But now, he believes it'll be a bust for the city.

"They overpromised and underdelivered," Witt said about RNC organizers.

Milwaukee was also selected to host the Democratic National Convention in 2020. But that event became mostly remote because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many local business owners are hoping to get in on the action this time around.

Shane Abrahamson works for Brick 3 Pizza, which is right around the corner from Fiserv Forum. He said he's excited to see what happens during the convention.

"I think it's going to be great for us, and it's going to bring a lot of money to the downtown area that we wouldn't see on a normal week," Abrahamson said.

However, no events are being held at Fiserv Forum for a month before and a month after the event because of the setup and takedown needed for the convention.

"So that hurt us big time," Abrahamson said.

Cooke said the restrictions during RNC preparations haven't hurt Milwaukee Brat House, as plenty of law enforcement and media have been in the area during the setup throughout the past few weeks.

"So we're getting good lunch rushes from that," Cooke said. "Those people eat and drink, too."

At least one local business, The Mothership in Bay View, decided to close its doors during the week of the event. Ricky Ramirez, the owner of the bar, said his staff made a collective decision to close during the convention and do private events instead.

Ramirez said he gave his staff that option for their "mental health."



More at SEED ARTICLE. I encourage reading it for a complete 'finish.' 


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CB
Professor Principal
1  seeder  CB    4 days ago

"Lots of the economic impact that occurs is not sticking in Milwaukee but is instead leaving town," Matheson said. "Higher hotel prices: That doesn't necessarily benefit Milwaukee. It benefits national headquarters of those hotel chains."

Witt said he was excited when the announcement came that Milwaukee had won the bid to host the event. But now, he believes it'll be a bust for the city.

"They overpromised and underdelivered," Witt said about RNC organizers.

From the article. 

Good. Bad. Indifferent. You decide.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
1.1  Trout Giggles  replied to  CB @1    4 days ago

Here's what got me:

But not everyone believes the hype. In recent weeks, some business owners have publicly questioned whether the RNC will actually be that good for Milwaukee businesses. They include Gary Witt, the president and CEO of the Pabst Theater Group. Witt said he signed a contract with the RNC where the theater group agreed to book events for the convention.

"As the days and weeks and the months passed and we continuously had conversations and we awaited these multiple visits by people, they just really never happened," Witt said. "We had very few visits to the venues — nothing, really, of any consequence at all."

In late June, Witt said no events had been booked at the Riverside Theater, Pabst Theater, The Fitzgerald or the Vivarium. Turner Hall Ballroom has been rented out by CNN during the convention.

"Essentially, we sit today — as a lot of other spaces are in the city of Milwaukee — basically unused and empty during a time period when we were specifically told to hold those dates open," Witt said.

Told to hold them open and now they're not being used. He could be making money off those empty spaces.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
1.1.1  seeder  CB  replied to  Trout Giggles @1.1    4 days ago

Yes. 

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
1.1.2  devangelical  replied to  Trout Giggles @1.1    4 days ago

meth and coke dealers, strippers, hookers and gay escorts are the only people that cash in at RNC conventions...

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
1.1.3  Tessylo  replied to  devangelical @1.1.2    4 days ago

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Right Down the Center
Senior Guide
1.1.4  Right Down the Center  replied to  Tessylo @1.1.3    4 days ago

[]

 
 
 
Jeremy Retired in NC
Professor Principal
1.1.5  Jeremy Retired in NC  replied to  Right Down the Center @1.1.4    4 days ago

[]

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Senior Guide
1.1.6  Right Down the Center  replied to  Jeremy Retired in NC @1.1.5    4 days ago

[]

 
 
 
Jeremy Retired in NC
Professor Principal
1.1.7  Jeremy Retired in NC  replied to  Right Down the Center @1.1.6    4 days ago

[]

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
1.1.8  seeder  CB  replied to  devangelical @1.1.2    4 days ago

Actually, I have read book writers (in the know about such matters/conventions) commentaries about that very thing occurring when the 'alley-cats' are on the town! Of course, being that California is a solid blue state, I have never been near such conventions (of conservatives) to have practical local insights. 

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
1.1.9  Krishna  replied to  CB @1.1.8    3 days ago
Of course, being that California is a solid blue state, I have never been near such conventions (of conservatives) to have practical local insights.

Good point!

(After all, as everyone knows, there are no conservatives in California)

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
2  Trout Giggles    4 days ago
Witt said he was excited when the announcement came that Milwaukee had won the bid to host the event. But now, he believes it'll be a bust for the city. "They overpromised and underdelivered," Witt said about RNC organizers.

The RNC learned from the best

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
2.1  devangelical  replied to  Trout Giggles @2    4 days ago
overpromised and underdelivered

the main reason why joe's age is the maga campaign topic now, instead of trump's lack of accomplishments during his term.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
2.1.1  Texan1211  replied to  devangelical @2.1    4 days ago
the main reason why joe's age is the maga campaign topic now

Interesting that so many Democrats and most of the media is now magically "maga" because they are concerned about Joe's mental faculties.

instead of trump's lack of accomplishments during his term.

While Joe Biden's campaign and his sycophant supporters seemingly can only rail about Trump instead of touting inflation, the deficit, and the border successes of Biden.

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
3  Krishna    3 days ago

Readers are encouraged to read the article at-length.

Good luck with that! jrSmiley_40_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1  seeder  CB  replied to  Krishna @3    3 days ago

You should lead the way forward on it! :)

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
3.1.1  Krishna  replied to  CB @3.1    3 days ago
You should lead the way forward on it!

I've tried-- for years. (I was active on Social Media sites long before NT existed-- in fact before Newsvine...

I was in AOL and Prodigy chat rooms in the early days.

When you're dealing with many people who think they "know it all"-- what are the odds of them wanting to look at a posted video-- or actually read a linked article?

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
4  Krishna    3 days ago

I was using a PC-- Prodigy was in DOS> Then they had an announcement that soon they would be experimenting with a radical new technology that would make it even easier to use the site. The next month they would be introducing this ground-breaking new technology-- it was called "Windows"

 
 

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