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Volume 24 No. 116
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     The MA House Ways and Means Committee Friday called for a
"stand-alone" convention center in South Boston -- without
funding for companion stadiums, according to Phil Primack of the
BOSTON HERALD.  The bill "flatly rebuffed" MA Gov. William Weld's
push for a full megaplex at the Crosstown site, thus prompting a
veto threat from Weld because of its call for a "hefty hike" in
the statewide hotel tax.  House Ways and Means Chair Thomas
Finneran:  "It was really when we started to chart costs and
revenues that it became more evident to us that South Boston had
to be the site and the stadium had to be outright severed."
Primack reports the bill may leave Patriots Owner Robert Kraft
"even worse off."  The new bill restates last year's offer of
using public funds to improve roads and other infrastructure at
Foxboro Stadium, however no state money will be released until
both the Patriots and the NFL commit to keep the team in the
state "for the next 25 years" (BOSTON HERALD, 10/14). Stephen
Tocco, Weld's megaplex point-man, refuses to acknowledge that a
stadium as part of a convention center is "dead" (David
Halbfinger, BOSTON GLOBE, 10/16).