Raiders One Step from Vegas
Las Vegas is only one step away from getting the Raiders NFL team after the Nevada Senate and Legislature passed a bill that raises $750 million in pubic funding for a stadium by increasing room taxes in Clark County.
Raiders owner Mark Davis who will be in Carson City when Governor Brian Sandoval signs the bill on Monday, released the following statement:
I would like to thank Governor Sandoval, the Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee, and the members of the Nevada Legislature on this historic day. All parties have worked extremely hard to develop and approve this tremendous stadium project that will serve as a proud new home for the entire Raider Nation.
What Is Next
The stadium is estimated to cost $1.9 Billion. (You can see rendering of it here.) Of the remainder, the Raiders will put up $500 million and the rest will be financed by a group backed by Billionnaire Sheldon Adelson. The funding looks to be rather solid and I wouldn’t expect it to be an issue going forward so that leaves only one more hurdle.
First, Mark Davis must file an official relocation plan with the league. He is widely expected to do this at the owner’s meeting next week. That would pave the way for an official vote on the relocation in January. To be approved, 24 of the league’s 32 owners will have to vote yes. A tall task, but considering the alternatives for the Raiders, one that is plausible.
As someone who has lived in Las Vegas for 23 years, I have long dreamed of having a major league team of our own. Now, with an NHL expansion team and the possibility of the Raiders, it seems like we may have two. I just wonder if the cost is just a bit too high. After all, no city has ever contributed $750 million to a stadium.
Is Las Vegas selling its soul in order to get a team and a venue that may never generate the revenue the city is giving up? Will this new stadium really be all that useful outside of football given the number of other venues already available in the city? I don’t know and time will tell, but the ball is now in the NFL’s court. Vegas has spoken and come through with the money. It seems that the Las Vegas Raiders may just be coming to town.
What do you think?