Carson City, Nev. (AP) – A bill introduced late Friday in the Nevada Legislature would give the Oakland Athletics up to $380 million for a potential 30,000-seat, $1.5 billion retractable roof stadium on the Las Vegas Strip.
The bulk of the public money would come from $180 million in transferable tax credits from the state and $120 million in county bonds, which could vary based on interest rate returns. Clark County will also provide a $25 million loan for infrastructure costs.
The A’s are looking for a home to replace the Oakland Coliseum, where the team has played since moving from Kansas City for the 1968 season. The team sought to build a stadium in Fremont, San Jose, and eventually the Oakland waterfront, all of which never materialized.
The plan in the Nevada Legislature would not raise taxes directly. It can proceed by a simple majority vote in the Senate and Assembly. Lawmakers have a little over a week to consider the motion before adjourning on June 5, although it could be voted on if a special session is called.
The athletics have agreed to use the land at the south end of the Las Vegas Strip, where the Tropicana Las Vegas casino resort sits. Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao has said he is disappointed that the team did not negotiate with Oakland as “true partners”.
Las Vegas would be the fourth home for the franchise, which began as the Philadelphia Athletics from 1901–54. It would become the smallest TV market in Major League Baseball and the smallest market to be home to three major professional sports franchises.
The team and Las Vegas are hoping to attract some of the 40 million tourists who visit the city annually to help fill the stadium. A capacity of 30,000 seats would make it the smallest MLB stadium.
MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said Thursday that a vote on a possible move of the Oakland Athletics to Las Vegas could happen when the owners meet in New York June 13-15.
The plan faces an uncertain path in the Nevada Legislature. On Thursday, Democratic leaders said the funding bill for A could not go through if Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo vetoed five budget bills, which they threatened to do as many of their priorities or has faded into Democratic-controlled. Legislature.
Under the bill, the Clark County Board of Commissioners would create a homelessness prevention and assistance fund in the stadium area, in coordination with MLB and the Nevada Resort Association. There, they will manage funding for services, including emergency rental and utility assistance, job training, rehabilitation and counseling services for those at risk of homelessness.
The lease agreement with the Las Vegas Stadium Authority is up for renewal after 30 years.
Nevada’s legislative leadership is reviewing the proposal, Democratic state Assembly Speaker Steve Yeager said in a statement Thursday.
“No commitment will be made until we have both evaluated the official proposal and received input from interested parties, including members of the affected community,” Yeager said.
Stern is a core member of the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms. Follow Stern on Twitter: @gabestern326.