Brewers applaud efforts to maintain American Family Field

Plan would keep Major League Baseball in Milwaukee for the next generation

February 14th, 2023

MILWAUKEE – Following the news that Governor Evers will include provisions in his state budget to ensure the Southeast Wisconsin Professional Baseball Park District has the funds necessary to maintain the longevity of American Family Field, Rick Schlesinger, President of Business Operations for the Milwaukee Brewers, released the following statement:
“The Milwaukee Brewers are committed to working with policymakers on both sides of the aisle to extend the life of American Family Field and help make Major League Baseball possible in Wisconsin for the next generation. This will require creative solutions that garner bipartisan support. We oppose the return of the five-county tax, and we are prepared to commit to a lease extension for the Brewers to remain at American Family Field through at least 2043.
“We are not asking for the Stadium District to take on new financial obligations under the lease, or for a new ballpark – just the resources to make sure the Stadium District’s existing obligations are met. As we said when the Stadium District’s funding shortfall first became known, we have remained focused on gathering facts and information that everyone can rely upon through a full capital needs assessment. This process of having Venue Solutions Group (VSG) perform a capital needs assessment, combined with additional diligence by the state’s consultant CAA ICON, has established those facts.
“American Family Field has had a $2.5 billion statewide economic impact, created thousands of jobs, and made it possible for a team in a small market like Milwaukee to compete. We thank Gov. Evers and the Legislature for their consideration of this issue as we work with them, the Stadium District, and all key stakeholders on next steps.”
As the primary owner and landlord of American Family Field, the Stadium District is responsible for all major capital repairs and necessary improvements. Recently it has been determined that the District will require additional funds to honor its lease obligations to the Brewers, or future obligations like them.
Since opening its doors in 2001, the ballpark has contributed $2.5 billion in direct statewide impact, according to a study released by the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce in 2020, contributes millions annually in net new tax revenue to the state, and supported 3,000 jobs in 2022 alone. As the smallest market as defined by the MLB, Milwaukee requires a premier ballpark to generate ticket sales and compete – making maintenance of the ballpark all the more critical.