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SBD/March 16, 2011/Facilities
Published March 16, 2011
HOME LOAN: In Memphis, Amos Maki reports the city’s Division of Housing and Community Development “may ask for a $25 million loan from the city’s Capital Improvement Program budget for improvements to the Mid-South Fairgrounds and Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium, including demolition of the Mid-South Coliseum and installation of new luxury suites and JumboTron video screens.” HCD Dir Robert Lipscomb yesterday said that the loan “would be repaid through increased retail sales at a planned ‘urban retail village’ on the fairgrounds site.” But “several council members questioned the wisdom of approving such a large loan -- $25 million is more than one-third of the city’s CIP budget for the next fiscal year -- without first studying what type of retail demand the fairgrounds could support” (Memphis COMMERCIAL APPEAL, 3/16).
NOT HITTING THE JACKPOT: In Baltimore, Hanah Cho notes some Maryland lawmakers yesterday questioned “why slot machine revenue allocated for racetrack improvements should be diverted to help fund the day-to-day operations of the Maryland Jockey Club.” State law requires the MJC to “submit audited financial reports annually, but the racetrack operator failed to provide them in 2008 and 2009 because of the bankruptcy of the tracks' then-owner, Magna Entertainment Corp.” The MJC recently filed statements for those two years, revealing it lost more than $14M in '09 and $12M in '08 (Baltimore SUN, 3/16).