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Volume 24 No. 156

Facilities Venues

          Pro-stadium group Minnesota Wins said that a new poll
     it commissioned shows that the stadium issue "could swing
     some legislative races" in '98 if legislators reject a
     gambling-linked ballpark finance package and the Twins move,
     according to Jay Weiner of the Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE. 
     The 607-person poll conducted by MN-based Decision Resources
     Ltd. of Minneapolis, found that "up to" 14% of state voters
     "would punish their legislators for voting against a
     ballpark package if gambling were the funding sources and
     the Twins fled."  The poll also shows 7% of voters would
     "reward" legislators for such a vote.  Political consultant
     John Himle said that net swing of 7% "could affect tight
     races in the" '98 House elections.  State Sen. John
     Hottinger called the poll "highly suspect" since it was paid
     for by Minnesota Wins "at a cost of about $10,000."  Weiner
     adds the poll "reflects ambivalence among Minnesotans." 
     Asked first if they would support a new stadium, 59% said
     no.  But later, asked if they would support a ballpark if
     there were no "new taxes and no state general revenues
     used," 73% said yes (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 9/30). 

          Olympia Development, owned by Tigers & Red Wings Owner
     Mike Ilitch, confirmed Monday that it "has bought about
     three acres of parking lots" near the site of the Tigers'
     new ballpark, according to Patricia Montemurri of the
     DETROIT FREE PRESS.  Olympia spokesperson Alexander
     Sebastian said the land was bought for "stadium-related
     development."  The purchase gives Ilitch "more control over
     future development in the area" (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 9/30).

          Oakland Alameda Coliseum authority officials filed a
     lawsuit yesterday against the Raiders charging them with
     interfering with a $17.5M naming-rights deal with UMAX
     Corp., according to Rick DelVecchio in a front-page story in
     the S.F. CHRONICLE.  The dispute "is the most dramatic
     example of the deterioration of relations between the NFL
     team and East Bay officials."  The Coliseum complaint
     accuses the Raiders of making "unreasonable objections to
     the name sale to extract more cash from the Coliseum."  The
     Coliseum authority is seeking damages from the team "and a
     judgment on whether the Raiders have a right to break" their
     lease.  Raiders attorney Joseph Alioto: "We are trying to
     work things out with them.  ... We're not talking about
     leaving Oakland, but if they're trying to force us out of
     Oakland they're going about it the right way."  Alioto said
     that the Raiders "aren't bluffing and will insist in the
     counterclaim that East Bay officials haven't fulfilled their
     end of the lease agreement" (S.F. CHRONICLE, 9/30).  In San
     Jose, Frances Dinkelspiel reports that Raiders officials
     contend "they had been misled" by East Bay officials who
     told them in '95 that selling out the Coliseum "for Raiders
     games would be no problem."  UMAX officials had no comment
     on the lawsuit and said they "still hope the name deal is
     viable" (SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS, 9/30).