ESPN has received more than $260 million in tax breaks and credits over the past 12 years to remain in Connecticut, the New York Times reported this week.
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The network, which makes more than $6 billion a year in subscriber fees alone, employs more than 4,000 workers in the state, which is why it has been so successful in lobbying for state support.
“We want ESPN to have the biggest possible footprint in Connecticut, and we want them spending their dollars in Connecticut instead of any other state,” Gov. Dannel P. Malloy told the Times.
Critics of the governor argue that the state’s resources should be spent elsewhere, but ESPN’s reputation as a top-flight corporate parter of Connecticut is unmatched, particularly in Bristol where it is headquartered.
“I wish everyone was that good,” said Frank N. Nicastro Sr., a Democratic state representative from Bristol and a former mayor. “I’ve watched them grow from a little acorn to an unbelievable size. They’ve done wonders for the city of Bristol.”