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The Reds have yet to decide whether they'll back a new ballpark or renovated Cinergy Field. Hamilton County [OH] Commissioner Bob Bedinghaus: "It's up in the air." Reds Managing Exec John Allen: "Both are still on the table" (CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, 2/26)....In S.F., Matier & Ross report that 49ers co-Owner Denise DeBartolo York "ordered" the stadium planning operation for the "stalled 49ers stadium deal" to move out of offices at DeBartolo Entertainment, in what Matier & Ross call "another move to distance the stadium from Eddie's gaming company" (S.F. CHRONICLE, 2/27)....Denver Mayor Wellington Webb "came out strongly against" adding a retractable roof to the proposed new Broncos stadium (ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS, 2/27)....CORRECTION: Yesterday's DAILY misidentified the site of a new auto racing track being developed by Int'l Speedway Corp. It is being planned for Kansas City, KS (THE DAILY).
The MA Senate "overwhelmingly passed" a Patriots stadium bill yesterday that includes a funding measure that would impose an income tax on visiting team athletes playing in Foxboro, according to Tina Cassidy of the BOSTON GLOBE. After the Senate voted 36-1 for the legislation, House Speaker Thomas Finneran said he was "curious" about the income tax idea. Acting Gov. Paul Cellucci said that he "opposes the tax on the players." A conference committee comprised of House and Senate members could be assembled as early as Monday, to "work out differences between the bill passed yesterday and the House version passed last fall." The Senate version calls for a new $200M stadium, while the House version calls for a $50M remodeling of Foxboro Stadium. Patriots VP Jonathan Kraft said he "was relieved" the stadium bill is "making progress" (BOSTON GLOBE, 2/27).
The city of St. Paul was dealt a "stunning, though not unexpected, blow" yesterday when a Senate committee recommended that no money be spent on the city's hockey arena, according to Maria Douglas Reeve of the ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS. The move means that a bill containing capital improvement projects for the state will go to the Senate next week minus $65M for improvements to the St. Paul RiverCentre. The decision had been "foreshadowed for months" as the Legislature debated financing a new baseball stadium for the Twins (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 2/27). In Minneapolis, Sid Hartman reports that "the word in St. Paul" is that Senate Majority Leader Roger Moe "and many members of the Legislature are firm on their stance: If a [baseball] stadium isn't going to be built, then St. Paul shouldn't be given" $65M for a hockey arena (STAR TRIBUNE, 2/27). Also in MN, Robert Whereatt reports "any hope of resuscitating support for a baseball stadium was dashed" yesterday after a bill that "would have established a framework for transferring the Twins to a nonprofit community organization was defeated on a 12-4 vote" (STAR TRIBUNE, 2/27).