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TAMPA BAY OFFICIAL OFFERS INCENTIVES TO LURE LOCAL OWNERS
Published November 16, 1994
Hillsborough County Commission Chair Joe Chillura said the "county could provide more than $40 million worth of renovations to Tampa Stadium to induce the next owners" of the Bucs to keep the team in Tampa. Chillura's comments went "further than other elected officials" in promising tax dollars to keep the team. He said funds could come from excess surplus hotel taxes collected to help pay for a downtown hockey arena, but those funds would "only cover a fraction" of $40M (Larry Dougherty, ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 11/16). The threat of a move by the team is consuming the local media. Steelers Owner Dan Rooney feels a move by the Bucs could be "the first real test" of the nine guidelines for relocation implemented in '84 by former Commissioner Pete Rozelle following the Colts move to Indianapolis. NFL spokesperson Greg Aiello: "The league only wants teams to move when it is absolutely necessary. That is why we have the guidelines." When the guidelines -- such as stadium lease and financial conditions -- are applied to the Bucs, the team "appears to be in good shape" (Pat Yasinkas, TAMPA TRIBUNE, 11/16). Local investors willing to purchase the team will do so only under the following conditions, according to TAMPA TRIBUNE columnist Tom McEwen. 1) If the financial numbers work; 2) Tampa Stadium can be renovated; 3) New Buc facilities are worked out; 4) Community support via ticket and luxury box sales (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 11/16).