SBD/19/Franchises

MEMPHIS READY TO TALK WITH NFL OILERS ABOUT BREAKING LEASE

          The Memphis and Shelby County, TN, Authority has voted
     to give its board the power to negotiate with the NFL Oilers
     if they want to break their Liberty Bowl lease for '98,
     according to David Williams of the Memphis COMMERCIAL
     APPEAL.  Authority Vice Chair Reggie Barnes: "We would like
     to have a very substantial monetary settlement if the Oilers
     leave."  The authority receives a rebate of state sales
     taxes from Oilers games in Memphis.  In '97, that rebate was
     more than $650,000 (COMMERCIAL APPEAL, 2/18).  In Nashville,
     Rob Moritz reported that an end to the Oilers' Memphis lease
     "could be negotiated as soon as next week" (BANNER, 2/18).

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