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Nassau County Would Receive 11.5% Of Revenue From New Islanders Arena
Published June 22, 2011
Nassau County "would receive 11.5 percent of all revenue from a new Nassau Coliseum -- or a minimum of $14 million a year -- under the agreement between County Executive Edward Mangano and the Islanders" to be announced today, according to Marshall & Brodsky of NEWSDAY. The deal would give Islanders Owner Charles Wang a "30-year lease beginning in 2015 over the entire 77 acres surrounding the Coliseum, but would not grant him development rights." Wang would have to pay the county $14M annually, “regardless of how much the team takes in.” Officials said that the Coliseum’s first year would “bring the county more than $28 million in total.” The agreement focuses solely on the “new arena and a surface lot that would provide 6,500 parking spaces,” but the county could “issue a request for proposals for other development.” The agreement comes six weeks before the planned Aug. 1 referendum on “whether the county should borrow up to $400 million to finance the construction of a new hockey arena and a minor league ballpark.” Homeowners would pay more than “$50 more per year to cover the $26 million in annual debt service in the two years before the Coliseum is completed.” But county officials predicted that the “revenues would offset tax increases in future years.” Islanders Senior VP Michael Picker said that the county would “receive its share of money from all Coliseum activities and revenue streams, even though Wang himself does not profit from concert ticket revenue.” That means Wang “would have to pay the county’s portion, even when he doesn’t directly benefit.” Pickler said, “He is paying for this arena” (NEWSDAY, 6/22). On Long Island, Aisha Al-Muslim reports the Town of Hempstead Board yesterday unanimously passed a zoning plan for the 77 acres around the Coliseum and the Marriott Hotel, hailing the plan as “flexible.” The board approved a “new mixed-use zone district for the site following a public hearing.” Officials said that the zoning provides “a framework for development of the 5.4 million square feet surrounding the Coliseum.” The rezoning “has nothing to do with the lease and revenue-sharing agreement to be announced” today (NEWSDAY, 6/22).