Thursday, December 01, 2005

Brunched With The Devil In The Pale Sunlight

Not-so-fresh off his team's World Series victory, Jerry Reinsdorf slinks in to town (did you get chills too?) and meets with the DC Council this morning. He should expect bagels and shouting. Lots of shouting. Mayor Williams is standing firm. And reading between the lines, he seems to be playing the good cop to the unruly bad cop. David Catania as Bud White? I like it!

El Mayor is arguing that MLB needs to give the city the $24 million rent guarantee in case of terrorist attack or natural disaster, as well as $20 million towards stadium construction. On the first matter, MLB is technically within their right. The Stadium Agreement specifically calls for unsecured rent. But, as we figured out yesterday, the Stadium Agreement doesn't really give MLB much recourse other than moving the team -- which they wouldn't do over such a pittance....maybe! (You never know with these yahoos!) The $20 million for construction is a smokescreen. That money wouldn't go towards paying down the city's share; it'd go towards providing VIP parking for the same fat cats whose double-stacked luxury boxes are forcing the upper deck to be located in Virginia.

That being said, appearances are important. And if DC can get some concessions out of MLB, that's a good thing.


The WaPo article pointed out one other thing that I guess I missed (or maybe just didn't see an exact figure for). Even though the agreement with the city was for $535 million, the DC CFO Natwar Gandhi says they need an additional $54 million to pay for financing fees on the bonds. (10% commission, I guess??)

He claims, however, that the money to pay the $54 million won't come from the general coffers, but from a combo of baseball revenues from this season, and from interest on the bonds.

While that doesn't come out of the general coffers, per se, isn't that money that would otherwise go IN to the general coffers? So, in effect, the stadium really IS costing more than budgeted? Ah, logic.


  • Am I the only one who thinks that they could have raised money for the stadium by selling tickets to this hearing? Reinsdorf vs. Catania: The Thrilla in Croppzilla.

    By Blogger Nate, at 12/01/2005 9:50 AM  

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