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MORE WOES BY THE BAY: WARRIORS' ARENA COULD FALL $20M SHORT
Published January 30, 1998
Revenues from the Warriors' renovated arena "could fall more than" $20M short of the "amount needed to cover annual bond payments and arena expenses during the next 10 years," according to a report prepared for the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority and cited by Renee Koury of the SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS. The issue of whether the team or the city and county "should cover any financial gap" in the $140M Warriors deal "has become a sticking point in the negotiations for a contract giving" team Owner Chris Cohan's Warriors Arena Management (WAM) control of the arena. The contract proposal "was pulled at the last minute from the Coliseum authority's agenda Thursday." Under a proposed 30- year deal, WAM would run the arena and pay bond debt on the renovated facility. But Oakland City Manager Robert Bobb said that because WAM is "separate from the team and worth just" $500,000, the city and county would have "little recourse if it failed to pay" the arena bills. Team General Counsel Robin Baggett said the team "may voluntarily cover a shortfall, but we will not guarantee it contractually." Some Oakland city execs "are insisting the Warriors management agreement should protect the public" from covering the shortfall. The report said that the city and county "are better off letting the Warriors run the Arena, projecting deficits" of $30M-$34M over 10 years if the Coliseum manages the arena itself (MERCURY NEWS, 1/30).