The Raiders recently lost a significant portion of their financing for a Las Vegas stadium proposal. They’ve got it back.
The club informed the NFL stadium and finance committees that it received a financing commitment from Bank of America on the proposed $1.9 billion project, a league source told CSN California on Monday.
The Raiders’ relocation prospects looked glum last month, when billionaire casino magnate Sheldon Adelson removed his $650 million commitment to the stadium project after struggling to secure a proper business deal with the Raiders.
Investment firm Goldman Sachs backed out of the deal the following day, creating a huge funding gap in a stadium proposal aimed at getting the Raiders out of Oakland.
The state of Nevada has pledged $750 million in public funds from a tourism tax, with an additional $500 million coming from the Raiders and a loan from the NFL. Bank of America's backing will fund the rest of the project.
The Raiders hope their new financing plan will be well received by the league and set up an opportunity for owners to vote on their Raiders relocation application at the NFL owners meetings from March 26-28 in Phoenix.
A vote doesn’t have to come then, and could occur later in the spring or summer. The Raiders will play in Oakland next season, and have a team option to play here in 2018 as well.
Oakland mayor Libby Schaff also updated the NFL's stadium and financing commitees on a proposal to keep the Raiders in the East Bay, though a separate league source indicated there was nothing new to sway the league. She released a statement emphasizing the city's intentions Monday afternoon.
“Oakland is ready to compete," Schaff said in the statement. "We were excited to be offered the opportunity to make a presentation before the National Football League’s Joint Stadium and Finance Committee in Florida. We want to thank the NFL for this invitation to share our vision for a locally-supported proposal that could result in a new home for the Raiders in Oakland.
“Today, we presented a plan that we believe responsibly meets the needs of all parties. We made a sound economic case for keeping the Raiders in Oakland through the creation of what could become one of America’s premier mixed-use sporting venues. Ours is a project that enhances the use of the already-entitled Oakland Coliseum site for the Raiders and for the public benefit and leverages the site’s proximity to BART and other public transit options, Oakland International Airport and major freeways.
“The Oakland solution for the Raiders keeps the Raiders at home in Oakland, in the country’s sixth largest media market that is demonstrating strong growth due to its innovative and diverse economy.
“What we presented demonstrated the commitment and effort made by the jurisdictions that oversee the stadium land -- Alameda County and the City of Oakland. I thank Alameda County Supervisor Scott Haggerty and Oakland City Council President Larry Reid for their leadership. We have worked collaboratively with Ronnie Lott, Rodney Peete and the investors they have assembled behind this Oakland-based project. Together, we’ve created a framework that gives the Raiders a new stadium in Oakland that is responsible to the team, the league, the fans and Oakland taxpayers.
“The City of Oakland is prepared to support this effort in a way that does not endanger the City’s general fund using the “but for” taxes generated by the project to provide up to $200 million for public infrastructure and transportation improvements. This will support a new stadium and ancillary development that will enhance the economic vitality of East Oakland and better serve our community. Additionally, the City and the County are prepared to leverage the value of the land at this transit-rich site to create jobs, an enhanced fan experience and other opportunities.
“Ronnie Lott, Rodney Peete and the Fortress Group bring the financial assets and the capability to ensure construction completion, manage the sale of private seat licenses and cover any cost overruns – three things that are essential for a successful project to get done. Ronnie Lott and Rodney Peete also bring deep and extensive ties with the NFL, the Raiders and our community.”