LEGISLATORS TO VOTE BY FRIDAY ON SEATTLE STADIUM TAX PLAN
WA lawmakers are hoping to vote by Friday on a bill that
would allow the King County Council to raise the county sales tax
by .1 cent according to the Tacoma MORNING NEWS TRIBUNE. This
legislation would create the $27M a year necessary to build a
proposed $280M retractable roof stadium for the Mariners. The
bill would also "provide enough money" to finance ceiling and
roof repairs on the Kingdome. According to State Rep. Steve Van
Luven, the bill would, among other things, establish a "public
facilities district to build and operate" the stadium; require
the Mariners to pay $45M of the cost over 20 years; require the
Mariners to sign a 20-year lease; require the Mariners to play at
least 90% of their home games there; and finally, the bill the
new ballpark is to have a "retractable roof and real grass."
Unlike prior proposals, this deal would not include direct state
participation, though Mariners officials have not "given up hope"
on state money. Mariners VP Paul Isaki: "The issue of state
participation is not entirely closed" (Peter Callaghan, Tacoma
MORNING NEWS TRIBUNE, 5/11).