Iowa Lawmakers Say No To Iowa Speedway Boost
Iowa legislators ended their session on Thursday with the budget being the last item of business. Iowa Speedway had the green light from the Senate which would apportion $8 million for infrastructure improvements. However, the House black flagged that provision from the budget in conference committee. Thus Iowa Speedway will have to go somewhere else with hat in hand to raise the money.
Those proposed upgrades to the 7-year old facility are with the design in mind of luring the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. No doubt, the speedway ownership and the city of Newton which is 30 miles east of Des Moines feel as if they lost a little air off the spoiler by not securing funding from the state. The municipality has been working other angles on their own to bolster their prospects for improving the complex.
For one, the Newton City Council has instituted property tax rebates for the track. The Council also took the liberty of diminishing the assessed value of the property to aid that effort. The area also is in a Tax Increment Finance District which uses future gains in taxes to subsidize improvements. Ticket buyers to events already scheduled at Iowa Speedway pay a $4 surcharge to build a revenue base. It’s not exactly $8 million, but every scrap helps.
Dreams of Miss Sprint Cup gracing Victory Lane in Iowa just got a little foggier. Maybe she will pop out of a cornfield along with Shoeless Joe in Dyersville.