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NEW BILL WOULD PUT SEATTLE STADIUM ISSUES TO A VOTE
Published March 7, 1995
A bill that won approval in a state Senate committe yesterday would authorize a King County referendum on increasing local sales, hotel-motel and admissions taxes to pay for a new $250M baseball stadium for the Mariners and $51M in emergency renovations for the Kingdome. Under the bill, the county could raise $43M a year by increasing sales taxes by .1%, the hotel- motel tax by 2%, and creating a new 5% admissions tax on all entertainment and sporting events. Within the past week, other bills addressing the Kingdome and a new stadium were rejected. Mariners VP for Business and Development Paul Isaki says the referendum bill "keeps the stadium issue alive, but subjecting it to a public vote might work against keeping the team in Seattle." The team's lease expires after '96, and Isaki says now is the time for a decision: "We can't wait until next year and hope to be somewhere by 1997. Just because the lease runs out after the '96 season doesn't mean that's when the Mariners will wait to start figuring out what their future will be" (George & Bruscas, SEATTLE POST-INTELLEGENCER, 3/7).