SBD/2/Franchises

ALLEN TO GET THREE-YEAR LEASE PLUS INCENTIVES FOR SEAHAWKS?

          King County, WA, officials are reportedly ready to give
     Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen a three-year lease on the
     Kingdome, as well as other financial incentives, if he will
     agree to buy the Seahawks, according to David Schaefer of the
     SEATTLE TIMES.  By agreeing to Allen's terms, county
     officials "hope" he would exercise his option to buy the
     Seahawks.  Allen wants a shorter lease to gain leverage in
     negotiations with the State Legislature for a new stadium,
     but "if no deal were reached," the lease could allow the
     Seahawks to leave town after three years.  According to
     sources, the "specter of legal entanglements" and the
     "threat" that team Owner Ken Behring would try to move the
     team by declaring bankruptcy have caused Gov.-elect and King
     County Exec Gary Locke and members of the Metropolitan King
     County Council to go along with Allen's terms.  Business
     interests have lobbied Locke and the council to convince them
     that "they are better off" with a local owner such as Allen -
     - "even if he promises to stay in the area for only three
     years" -- than with Behring and the promise of years of
     litigation (SEATTLE TIMES, 11/27).  


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