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DC LAND AGENCY GIVES ARENA GO-AHEAD DESPITE LACK OF INFO

     The DC Redevelopment Land Agency "grudgingly" gave
preliminary approval to a land deal necessary for the city to
build a new sports arena, according to Lorraine Woellert in the
WASHINGTON TIMES.  The RLA holds title to the land where
Bullets/Caps Owner Abe Pollin wants to build a new 20,000-seat
arena, and the agency is unhappy with the agreement between the
city and Pollin to develop the project.  RLA Board Chair Michelle
Bernard:  "It's verbal vomit as far as I'm concerned."  RLA's
preliminary approval calls for the document to be rewritten.  The
board meets June 22 to consider final approvement (WASHINGTON
TIMES, 6/16).  An editorial in today's WASHINGTON POST praises
the arena efforts:  "Dangers remain until all the agencies,
commissions and other stops along the way have been cleared.  We
say this not as a call for suspending standards of responsibility
in evaluating a major financial proposal but as a continuing
warning for the city not to blow this great and probably last
significant opportunity for serious downtown economic revival"
(WASHINGTON POST, 6/16).
     AREN'T THEY SUPPOSED TO BE BROKE?  The DC government has
spent more than $800,000 on consulting and legal fees related to
the arena.  From a mayor's office report detailing expenses from
July '94-May '95:  More than $80,000 to environmental lawyers
Beveridge & Diamond; almost $128,00 to Coopers & Lybrand for pre-
development financial analysis; over $60,000 to Arnold & Porter,
which advised on lease, land-use, and construction issues; and
$125,000 to Mayor Marion Barry's special counsel on the project,
Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson (WASHINGTON TIMES,
6/15).
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