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The Minneapolis City Council has proposed a revised financial plan to purchase the Target Center with taxpayer-backed general obligation bonds for $40M. Part of the deal requires T- Wolves buyer Glen Taylor to pay an additional $14M to offset the original asking price of $54M. Taylor's agreement to pay Harvey Ratner and Marv Wolfenson $88.5M for the team is hung up over delays in the Target Center buyout (Diaz & Weiner, Minneapolis STAR-TRIBUNE, 1/13). Taylor had no response, other than to say: "That would create other problems" (Patrick Sweeney, St. Paul PIONEER-PRESS, 1/13).
While the Redskins are still formerly pursuing a new stadium in Anne Arundel County, MD, a WASHINGTON TIMES report claims that DC officials are attempting to lure Redskins Owner Jack Kent Cooke to stay in Washington. The DC deal, as outlined in the TIMES: DC will help pay to tear down RFK stadium; Cooke will pay to build a new stadium at the site; the Skins will play games at the Univ. of MD's Byrd Stadium in the interim. Officials representing Cooke denied the deal, stating the chances for such a deal as "absolutely nil." DC Mayor Marion Barry would not discuss the deal (Adrianne Flynn, WASHINGTON TIMES, 1/14).
WI Gov. Tommy Thompson has lent his support to a plan that would create a state sports lottery as a source to help finance a new stadium for the Brewers. The Milwaukee Stadium Commission is "certain" to recommend the sports lottery as one source of revenue, says commission chairman Robert Kahlor. Pending approval by the state legislature, the lottery proposal could go before state voters as early as April. Under the plan, public funds would account for "roughly" $180M of the $223.5M project. The Brewers would be responsible for the remaining costs. Other sources of revenue previously suggested by the commission include taxes on goods sold at the stadium, Indian gaming and restaurants (Gilbert & Schultze, MILWAUKEE JOURNAL, 1/13). DETAILS: The current stadium plan is "significantly different" from a 1989 plan in which the team was going to privately finance a $120M ballpark. The new stadium would seat 42,637, have 75 private suites, 3,000 club seats, restaurants, banquet facilities and a hall of fame. The team pledged $10-$15M up front along with $2-3M a year in rent for 20 years. Brewers Owner Bud Selig says the new plan is consistent with other communities that have publicly financed parks: "Baseball economies changed late in 1991 and early 1992, so when we started back in 1987, it has almost no relevance to the economics we're in today" (Daniel Hanley, MILWAUKEE JOURNAL, 1/13).