Friday, December 25, 2020

The Beacon Center's 12 days of pork, #11: The Hyenas may be laughing but the taxpayers sure aren't.

 The Beacon Center - The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a similar cycle: Government officials issue a lockdown, unintended consequences ensue, governments have to spend money to make up for their mistakes, and taxpayers suffer. 

Despite giving $1.4 million to Zoo Knoxville in the Knoxville city budget, city and county officials are having to pony up more money to keep the zoo afloat. When 75% of its revenue comes from ticket sales, a safer at home order makes it difficult for one of the area’s largest tourist attractions to keep the money flowing. As a result, the city is giving an extra $700,000 in taxpayer dollars to the zoo. Meanwhile, the county is giving an additional $500,000, but at least as a loan. This is what happens when governments start getting involved in non-core services. Costs can rise, and the old saying “in for a penny, in for a pound” ends up being true. City and county officials could look to other business models like Chicago’s famous Lincoln Park Zoo, which operates without government assistance by relying on donations.

Solution: Focus on core government services, privatize existing city-owned enterprises, and utilize loans instead of grants for nonprofits, if absolutely necessary. 

 on the eleventh day of Christmas, the government gave to me… a handout that is beastly

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