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Denver officials said they will take an "honest look" at redeveloping Mile High Stadium as an alternative to building a new Broncos facility, according to Alan Snel of the DENVER POST. Officials said the city will take three steps to evaluate Mile High's redevelopment potential. City officials will submit Mile High to a regional stadium site board; they will talk to Broncos officials to discuss the team's "exact needs" for a new facility; and they will hire a consultant to analyze the costs of rehabilitating Mile High. The study will cost "at least" $200,000. State Sen. Mike Coffman will also introduce a bill in the General Assembly that would give the Metropolitan Denver Football Stadium District Board the authority to remodel Mile High -- authority the stadium board "currently lacks." Broncos lobbyist Porter Wharton "questioned" whether a renovated Mile High would meet NFL stadium criteria and whether it could accommodate extensive maintenance costs outlined in a city engineering study (DENVER POST, 3/19).
TX State Rep. Kim Brimer said yesterday that athletes should help pay for new arenas through a "locker room usage fee" of up to $5,000 per player per game. Stars President Jim Lites, calling the fee an income tax, added such a plan "ain't gonna wash" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/19)....In Atlanta, the City Council voted to rename a section of Capitol Avenue, including the part that passes Turner Field, Hank Aaron Drive (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 3/18)....Also in Atlanta, the dispute over Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium "appears to be headed to court," over the issue of whether city and county officials give away public property without a legislative body debating and voting on the contract. In '93, the Braves were given a 20-year lease on the land where Fulton County Stadium sits and the agreement with the team calls for the stadium to be demolished to make room for 2,300 parking spaces (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 3/16)....New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority (NJSEA) officials confirmed that they are "actively negotiating" a naming rights deal with Seagrams to rename the Meadowlands racetrack Seagrams Park at the Meadowlands (N.Y. POST, 3/19)....The Raleigh City Council voted 5-3 Tuesday to delay $48M in additional public funding for a sports arena until more seats on the arena authority are filled locally and additional hotel-tax revenues are earmarked for the arts. The Council and Wake County officials "are trying to resolve their differences" on the financing repayment conditions (Raleigh NEWS & OBSERVER, 3/19).
The WI State Senate voted 18-15 Tuesday to have the Judiciary Committee review the bill that would limit the leasing of equipment for the Brewers' Miller Park, according to Amy Rinard of the MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL. Stadium Board Chair Robert Trunzo and Brewers President Bud Selig "praised the Senate's action." The possibility that the bill would "spark a string of lawsuits ... that would delay or even kill the project" arose during the vote. Sen. Joe Wineke, the bill's sponsor, said the delay "would ultimately kill the legislation." Judiciary Chair Lynn Adelman opposes the legislation (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 3/18).