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UNDER NEW IDEA, BUCS COULD AVOID SUIT BY COOPERATING
Published February 6, 1996
Under a plan being considered by Tampa officials, the city "would not sue the Bucs for moving if the drive for a new stadium fails." According to this morning's TAMPA TRIBUNE, that depends on the team working with stadium planners in an effort to gain approval from the Legislature for taxes to help pay for the $168M facility. If the Bucs were to cooperate and still no deal is reached, the team would be allowed to leave Tampa "without any legal reprisals." Thus far, the plan "has not been formally offered to the Bucs" and legislators continue to debate its merits. Hillsborough County Attorney Emeline Acton questioned the plan: "If all we'd be giving up is the right to sue to keep them here, that's one thing. If we give up our rights under contracts already in place, however, that's another." The Bucs' current deal with the Tampa Stadium Authority lasts four more seasons with a buyout clause allowing the team to pay $1.5M annually through the duration of the lease (Joe Henderson, TAMPA TRIBUNE, 2/5).