Las Vegas Politicians Accepted $55K in Free F1 Tix

Posted on: January 24, 2024, 04:39h. 

Last updated on: January 25, 2024, 12:00h.

Five Las Vegas politicians accepted “educational” tickets worth more than $10,900 each to attend November’s inaugural F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix, according to campaign finance records first reported by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

 F1 race car spewing money
This AI-generated image depicts an F1 race car spewing money all over the Las Vegas Grand Prix track. (Image: Chat GPT)

According to the newspaper, all seven members of the Clark County Commission, the Las Vegas Strip’s governing body, were offered a ticket to the Skybox area, according to a letter sent to commissioners.

The tickets, good for all F1 race events from November 15-18, were valued at $10K each, with $900 extra for Nevada’s 9% live entertainment tax.

Commissioners Marilyn Kirkpatrick and Michael Naft declined F1’s offer. Tick Segerblom, William McCurdy, Jim Gibson, Justin Jones, and Ross Miller did not.

Politicians Claim Research

Segerblom told the R-J that attending the race was “educational.”

The county — its employees and residents — made the event happen and suffered lots of adverse consequences as a result,” he said in a text to the newspaper. “If we’re going to keep doing it for nine more years, we need to learn everything we can.”

McCurdy echoed the sentiment, adding that it would have been “irresponsible for us to not see how it works.”

Miller said he attended one practice to understand the event’s size and to inform his permitting and licensing decisions.

Financial Disclosure Reveal Attendance

Attendance at the race was disclosed on the qualifying commissioners’ 2024 financial disclosure reports. Segerblom initially didn’t disclose his attendance, but he told the R-J he intended to amend his report.

Last Wednesday, McCurdy and Naft admitted accepting $10K in campaign donations each — the maximum allowed by law — from the Oakland Athletics. The MLB team also gave at least $1K each last year to the campaigns of 30 of the 38 Nevada lawmakers who voted to approve $380M in public funding for the A’s to build a new Las Vegas stadium.