SBD/November 21, 2011/Facilities

Facility Notes

In St. Petersburg, Richard Danielson wrote the city will have a “showcase party at Tropicana Field on the eve of next year's Republican National Convention.” Mayor Bill Foster said that the city “needs to have a word with RNC organizers and the Tampa Bay Rays about who pays to guard the event, which could draw up to 15,000 journalists and 5,000 or more delegates.” While the city “owns the Trop, the Rays manage it.” Under a deal between the two, when an event “grows to a certain size, the team has to contract with the city for services like security.” Rays VP/Communications Rick Vaughn “referred questions to the convention's host committee, though the team has agreed to make the Trop available for an RNC event on Aug. 26, the day before the convention is gaveled to order” (ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 11/19).

TAKE A SEAT: In L.A., Scott Wolf cited a source as saying that if USC takes over the L.A. Coliseum, the school is “prepared to spend $26 million just to replace the seats at the venerable stadium.” USC officials on Saturday said that the school “hopes the Coliseum Commission will take the first steps toward granting” the master lease “in December with final approval in January or February.” USC also “wants to renovate the locker rooms, build lounges for the athletes and improve the restrooms on a list of planned changes” (L.A. DAILY NEWS, 11/20).

BILL PAYMENT: In Nashville, Nate Rau reported the city’s Metro Sports Authority “will pay an estimated $7.8 million this year to the Nashville Predators ownership group and its management company to operate Bridgestone Arena.” Metro has the “opportunity to discontinue the $7.8 million subsidy by giving notice by Dec. 31, but there are no indications that will happen.” Mayor Karl Dean’s top aides said that they “believe the subsidy is working because it maintains the arena as a critical economic engine for downtown.” But other city leaders said that “it’s time for a change, especially considering the stress on the Metro budget” (Nashville TENNESSEAN, 11/20).
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