Sacramento mayor Darrell Steinberg is
pushing a new deal with the MLS expansion group led by Beverly Hills supermarket magnate Ron Burkle that he hopes will get approval from the city council when it meets Tuesday in a special session.
Sacramento stadium deal: Proposed term sheet
The urgency in getting the deal before the city council: The Sacramento expansion group hopes to have a finalized stadium agreement with the city of Sacramento to take to MLS's board of governors meeting April 18 in Los Angeles. Sacramento and St. Louis are the two cities fighting for MLS's 28th team.
Sacramento was once considered close to a lock for one of the two expansion spots to be awarded in MLS's year-long search for the 25th and 26th teams that ended with the selections of Nashville and Cincinnati. When he visited the California capital in April 2015, MLS commissioner Don Garber said it was "less about if, and more about when" Sacramento was awarded an MLS team.
Unlike other bidders in the 12-city expansion field, Sacramento already had a deal on a stadium in place and had begun work, prepping the Railyards area north of downtown Sacramento so construction could begin as soon MLS gave the green-light.
But that approval as MLS was concerned that the group backing Sacramento Republic FC needed deeper pockets.
The new term sheet offers a package of $33 million to Sac Soccer and Entertainment Holdings, which proposes to build a soccer stadium at a cost of more than $250 million in the Railyards area.
Here's some of what the city has proposed to do ...
-- Reimburse the MLS group for infrastructure work done around the stadium -- streets, walkways, sewer system and a light rail station. (It would set up a special infrastructure financing district to capture revenues from property taxes.)
-- Waive permit fees and provide tax rebates;
-- Commit funds for traffic control and policing around the stadium during soccer matches.
-- Allow the team to install five digital billboards around the city.
The value of the deal is a fraction of what the NBA Kings extracted out the city of Sacramento for their Golden 1 Center, but it is similar to other infrastructure deals MLS expansion teams have recently reached on new stadium projects.