The Oakland City Council and the Alameda County Board of Supervisors approved a nonbinding term sheet for a $1.3 billion stadium plan, which is Oakland’s latest attempt to keep the Raiders in their home market.
The City Council approved the terms with the 7-0 decision, while the Board of Supervisors backed them 3-1 with one abstention.
— Cristina Rendon (@CristinaKTVU) December 13, 2016
Board President Scott Haggerty said it was worth taking the next step because the plan is not committing taxpayer dollars, according to SFGate.com.
The vote approved the opening of negotiations between the City and a group of investors headed by former NFL player Ronnie Lott. This allows the city and investment group to finalize a deal, which they can pitch to the Raiders and the NFL.
In the current deal, the city of Oakland and Alameda County would provide 105 acres at the Coliseum site for the Raiders’ potential new stadium as well as parking. The project would take three years to be built, and it could include developments for businesses and housing too.
Additionally, the city would provide an additional $200 million for infrastructure. This includes improvements for roads, landscaping and possibly the BART station.
Still, there is no guarantee that the 55,000-seat stadium project is enough to keep the Raiders in Oakland.
The USA Today reported that Eric Grubman, NFL executive vice president and stadium point man, called the new proposal a ‘carbon copy’ of failed deals from the past few years.
Grubman said that the new proposal’s intentions are good, but the role of private investors made the deal similar to previous attempts for a new football stadium in Oakland.
He said that private investors are the third and fourth parties that put other motivations into negotiations. Developers and investors are interested in profits, which complicates the task.
Otherwise, the Raiders and the city should just negotiate a deal that works for the community, according to Grubman.
Further, Raiders owner Mark Davis has expressed commitment to move to Las Vegas, which has offered a stadium deal totaling $1.9 billion with $750 million from an approved hotel tax.
This did not stop the Raiders from exploring the recent stadium plan in Oakland. Before Tuesday’s vote, Raiders officials met with the Oakland investment group on Monday.
The 90-minute meeting featured Lott, non-elected city and county officials, and representatives from the NFL and the Raiders. However, Davis was not a part of those discussions, according to the same USA Today article.
Nonetheless, Pro Football Talk suggests that this Oakland plan could be a leverage ploy by the Raiders to help them get a deal in Las Vegas. Sands casino owner Sheldon Adelson, a key investor in the Vegas deal, is reportedly driving a hard bargain in Vegas.
Either way, Davis needs approval from 24 of 32 NFL owners before he can relocate to Las Vegas.
The Raiders are expected to apply for relocation at the end of the season. They are eligible to apply after the regular season ends Jan. 1.
Oakland is 10-3, and they can secure a playoff spot with a win over the San Diego Chargers on Dec. 18 per multiple reports. This would be the Raiders first playoff berth since the 2001-02 Super Bowl season.
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