SBD/20/Facilities Venues

TARGET CENTER DEAL GETS CLOSER TO COMPLETION

     The public buyout of the Target Center "took a giant step
toward completion Monday" when Minneapolis city finance officer
John Moir offered a solution to the potential "deal-breaking
problem of ticket surcharges tied to interest rates."
Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commissioner Chair Henry Savelkoul
after the new proposal was offered: "We have essentially reached
agreement with all the principal elements [to complete the buyout
of the Target Center and sale of the Timberwolves]."  The
solution offered by Moir, which still needs approval by the
Minneapolis city council, includes an arena reserve fund, managed
by the sports facilities commission and funded with money from
the sale of tax-exempt bonds.  If necessary, that money would be
used to cover the cost of any "excessive rise in ticket
surcharges."  All parties involved "expressed confidence that the
major hurdle had been cleared" with this new proposal by Moir.
The $54M public purchase of the Target Center from outgoing T-
wolves owners Marvin Wolfenson and Harvey Ratner has been a year
in the making.  When the sale of the arena is complete, perhaps
by the end of January, the sale of the T-wolves to Glen Taylor
for $88.5M also will be complete (Jay Weiner, Minneapolis STAR
TRIBUNE, 12/20).
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