Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers announced Tuesday that his 2023-25 state budget proposal would include $290 million for long-term improvements to the Brewers’ American Family Field.
The state has a current surplus of $7 billion, creating what Evers called a historic opportunity “to keep Major League Baseball here in Milwaukee for another 20 years.”
The lease on the stadium, which is guaranteed through 2030 with an additional set of five two-year options through 2040, would be extended through 2043, keeping the Brewers in Milwaukee until at least that time.
“The Governor’s Brewers proposal, like all of the other things he has leaked before his budget address, is just an idea,” Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu said in a statement reported by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “The legislature will write the budget and we will work with our colleagues throughout the state to explore our options and build a budget that makes sense for everyone in Wisconsin.”
A study previously conducted by the team found that improvement costs would total $428 million over the next 20 years. The $290 million from the state, paired with interest earned on that payment and another $70 million from the stadium district’s current reserve fund, would go toward a variety of improvements, “such as repairs to the ballpark’s retractable roof, replacing the seats, and dozens of other items,” per MJS.
Additionally, by extending their lease at American Family Field, the Brewers would generate state income and sales taxes totaling an estimated $400 million through 2043.
The Brewers would also continue to spend money to make improvements in the stadium, such as the recent additions of the Cream City Cocktail Bar and the X-Golf experience.
While talks of improvements in and around the stadium have been going on for several years, this could be the first step in actually seeing some of those improvements come to fruition, including a potential mixed-use commercial development similar to the Deer District near the Fiserv Forum in downtown Milwaukee, as first explored in a study last summer.