CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) A bill introduced Friday night in the Nevada Legislature would award the Oakland Athletics up to $380 million for a potential $1.5 billion 30,000 seat retractable roof stadium on the Las Vegas Strip.
The bulk of public funding would come from $180 million in state transferable tax credits and $120 million in county bonds, which can vary depending on interest rate yields. Clark County would also contribute $25 million in infrastructure cost credit.
The Aces were looking for a home to replace Oakland Coliseum, where the team has played since arriving from Kansas City for the 1968 season. The team was previously looking to build a stadium in Fremont, Calif., as well as San Jose and finally the Oakland waterfront, all ideas that never came to fruition.
The Nevada Legislature’s plan will not raise taxes directly. It can go ahead with a simple majority vote in the Senate and Assembly. Lawmakers have just over a week to consider the proposal before adjourning on June 5, although it could be voted on if a special session is called.
The Athletics agreed to use land at the south end of the Las Vegas Strip, where the Tropicana Las Vegas casino is located. Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao said she was disappointed the team did not negotiate with Oakland as a true partner.
Las Vegas would be the fourth home of a franchise that began as the Philadelphia Athletics from 1901 to 1954. It would become Major League Baseball’s smallest television market and the smallest market to house three major professional sports franchises.
The team and Las Vegas hope to attract the approximately 40 million tourists who visit the city each year to help fill the stadium. The 30,000 capacity would make it the smallest stadium in MLB.
MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said on Thursday a vote on whether Oakland Athletics would move to Las Vegas could take place when the owners meet June 13-15 in New York.
The plan faces an uncertain path through the Nevada Legislature. On Thursday, Democratic leaders declared funding bills, including for the Asmay not pass if Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo vetoes all five budget bills, which he threatened to do as many of his priorities stalled or faded in the Democratic-controlled Legislature.
Under the bill, the Clark County Board of Commissioners would establish a homelessness prevention and assistance fund along the stadium area in coordination with MLB and the Nevada Resort Association. There they would manage funds for services, including assistance with rent and emergency utilities, job training, rehabilitation and counseling services for people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.
The lease agreement with the Las Vegas Stadium Authority would be renewed after 30 years.
Nevada’s legislative leadership is considering the proposal, Democratic State Assembly Speaker Steve Yeager said in a statement Thursday.
No commitments will be made until we have evaluated the formal proposal and received feedback from interested parties, including affected community members, Yeager said.
Stern is a member of the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a national, nonprofit service program that places reporters in local newsrooms. Follow Stern on Twitter: @gabester326.
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