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With Politicians' Help, Marlins Are Screwing Stadium Neighbors

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Luther Campbell, the man whose booty-shaking madness made the U.S. Supreme Court stand up for free speech, gets as nasty as he wants to be for Miami New Times. This week, Luke rips commissioners for the looming parking and traffic problems at the Miami Marlins ballpark.

With the Marlins 16 days away from opening their new home, the City of Miami and Miami-Dade County are still finding ways to screw over taxpayers and residents while team owner Jeffrey Loria laughs all the way to the bank.

A couple of weeks ago, Loria's arrogant stepson, Marlins president David Samson, was caught on camera admitting to the Beacon Council what we already knew: Greed is what motivates him and his Daddy Warbucks.

But Sampson was right when he said that "the people who are running for office around the country really are not the cream of the intellectual crop."

If Miami city and county commissioners had any common sense, they would have put the stadium on the site of the old Miami Arena. That was the most logical location for a ballpark. It would have been easily accessible by Metrorail and there's plenty of parking in the area.I recently took a tour of the stadium. It looks like they put the Taj Mahal in Little Havana, but it is an architectural wonder that belongs in downtown Miami.

County Commissioner Bruno Barreiro and City Commissioner Frank Carollo haven't done a damn thing to help their constituents, who didn't ask to live right next to a 37,000-seat baseball stadium. Over the past couple of weeks, the poor residents who live around the stadium have gotten a taste of how horrible the traffic and parking will be during the 82 Marlins home games.

Barreiro and Carollo, whose districts include the $500 million stadium paid for by taxpayers, should be ashamed of themselves. How can they allow the Miami Parking Authority to suddenly start handing out $50 tickets to the residents who have no choice but to park on the streets? By abusing the ballpark's neighbors, the city and the county are trying to make back some of the money they gave away to the Marlins.

Barreiro and Carollo need to protect their constituents. How hard is it to hand out parking stickers to the people who can prove they live next to the stadium? The Miami Parking Authority should have begun issuing decals months ago instead of waiting until last week, after residents complained. Let's face it: The trollies shuttling fans from the Metrorail and off-site parking lots are just a Band-Aid.

Those poor residents will see more cars in one season of baseball than they saw during all the football games in the history of the Orange Bowl.

Follow Luke on Twitter @unclelukereal1.

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