Sacramento City Council OKs ICON, David Taylor As Arena Developers
The Sacramento City Council last night "gave its blessing to hire a panel of consultants" and "approved entering into an exclusive agreement with a development team" consisting of David Taylor and ICON Venue Group to build a $387M downtown arena for the NBA Kings, according to Ryan Lillis of the SACRAMENTO BEE. The "debate over whether to spend $555,000 on the consultants -- including $375,000 from the city's battered general fund budget -- drew the first City Council opposition to the arena discussion since the city's latest stadium push gained momentum earlier this year." But in the end, the council voted 7-2 to approve the plan. One of the contracts "approved was a $125,000 agreement with Barrett Sports Group, a sports facility financing consultant that has already served as a city consultant on this issue." Other contracts "will pay for parking experts, legal counsel and municipal financing consultants." Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson said that it is "possible that the cost of the contracts could be reimbursed to the city by a private investor in the project." City officials are in talks with AEG to "provide upfront financing to the project, run the facility and take in arena-related revenue." By entering into an agreement with Taylor and ICON, the council "lets the developers seek a business partner to invest, such as AEG" (SACRAMENTO BEE, 9/28).