Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Pittsburgh hockey arena negotiations

According to espn.com "The Penguins moved a step closer to leaving Pittsburgh, declaring on Monday an impasse in their new arena negotiations with state and local leaders and saying they will actively pursue relocation." What is mind-boggling about this is that according to ESPN,

"The Penguins had an agreement with Isle of Capri Casinos to build the arena at no expense to the team or taxpayers in exchange for a license to build a Pittsburgh slots casino, but a state board in December chose a competing bid." ESPN further states that "The breakdown in arena talks came only three days after Gov. Ed Rendell said he felt an agreement was close."

I'm not a Penguins fan, but I don't understand how if the governor and the local officials say they want to keep the team, and there's a plan available where the new stadium won't cost taxpayers anything, the casino board chooses a competing bid!! What was the state board thinking?

ESPN says that " Kansas City has offered its nearly completed Sprint Center to the Penguins rent-free. The Penguins would also gain revenue from development projects around the arena." So the Penguins have a good deal available in another city; I say move the team. This is a really bizarre story.

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