May 24: Nevada governor Joe Lombardo has given his stamp of approval, formally announcing the tentative agreement in a press release (Twitter link via Akers).
“This agreement follows months of negotiations between the state, the county and the A’s, and I believe it gives us a tremendous opportunity to continue building on the professional sports infrastructure of southern Nevada,” Lombardo said in a statement within today’s release. “Las Vegas is clearly a sports town, and Major League Baseball should be a part of it.”
The agreement will be introduced in Nevada Legislature “in the coming days to be publicly debated and considered,” per the press release.
May 23: The Athletics and lawmakers in Nevada have reached a tentative agreement on a stadium funding structure, per reports from both Mick Akers and Steve Sebelius of the Las Vegas Review-Journal and Tabitha Mueller and Howard Stutz of the Nevada Independent.
The Athletics initially agreed to a land purchase just west of the Las Vegas strip and were going to be asking for $500MM in public funding via county-issued bonds to be paid by tax dollars related to the stadium and relocation project. A few weeks later, they changed their target to a plot of land on the strip currently occupied by the Tropicana hotel, and were planning on filing a funding request last week for a lesser amount of $395MM.
Reporting on Friday indicated that there was a meaningful gap in what the A’s were seeking and what legislators was willing to provide. That seemed to suggest that there was at least some chance of the whole plan falling through and the club turning their attention back to Oakland, but this deal seems to push the organization closer to manifesting their relocation plans.
Per both reports, the agreed-upon deal includes a total of around $380MM in public money heading to the project. That is composed of $180MM from the state in transferable tax credits, with $90MM to be repaid over time from stadium revenues. Then there’s $120-125MM coming from Clark County in the form of bonds and another $25MM for infrastructure improvements. There will also be a 30-year property tax exemption issued by the county, which has an estimated value of $55MM.
Although the sides seem to have reached an agreement, there are still some more steps to go through. It has to be formally presented to the legislature, with filing potentially happening as soon as Wednesday, and then it needs to be approved as well as being signed by Governor Joe Lombardo. Major League Baseball’s relocation committee also needs to rubber stamp the project. The site is also close enough to Harry Reid International Airport that the Federal Aviation Administration will need to provide approval before construction can begin. Though those feel like small and surmountable hurdles to overcome compared to agreeing on the financial numbers.
Assuming those hoops are smoothly jumped through, Gaming and Leisure Properties Inc. will provide nine of the 35 acres of the Tropicana site to the A’s for free. The club hopes to construct a 30,000-seat stadium with a retractable roof in time to open for the 2027 season. Once the construction is complete, ownership of the land will transfer to the Las Vegas Stadium Authority. That body also came to own the Allegiant Stadium site, home of the Raiders, after that was completed.