LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – The Oakland A’s have pledged to spend at least $1 billion to build their new home in Las Vegas. That figure does not include land acquisition at the newly-revealed site of their future home on Tropicana Avenue. Nor does it factor in the cost of moving their operation 560 miles from the Bay to the desert.
The 8 News Now Investigators have confirmed that the Athletics – who are currently the worst team in all of professional baseball – want Nevada to somehow pony up half a billion dollars. They might have to get creative because Governor Joe Lombardo has indicated Nevadans will not pay any new taxes to fund this endeavor.
Clark County imposed a room tax on Las Vegas hotels to fund Allegiant Stadium, where the NFL’s Las Vegas Raiders play.
“The room tax was a new tax,” Jim Gibson, chairman of the Clark County Commission, told the 8 News Now Investigators. “There won’t be anything like that and the room tax is fully committed right now. So it’s my belief that the room tax is not in the equation.”
Additionally, Gibson said the Tropicana Avenue site is not in a redevelopment area, so redevelopment funds are not available.
“This location is not within one of our redevelopment areas,” Gibson shared.
The commissioner also added that he had spoken with the A’s, but that the legislature and Lombardo will set parameters that will dictate how Clark County will proceed financially.
“I know the county has to make some hard decisions,” he said.
Jeremy Aguero, a financial analyst hired by the A’s to advise them on the economic and fiscal impact of this undertaking, said Nevadans will benefit from the move.
Aguero indicated that the A’s not only plan to build a ballpark to seat 30,000 fans, but also a “baseball village” or “sports entertainment district” around the stadium.
Just under 30% of the fans attending the A’s games in Las Vegas will be tourists, who add tourism dollars and tax revenue to the local economy, Aguero shared with 8 News Now Investigators.
“That means that state and local governments also do very well as a result of the development of the project,” he said.
Aguero also worked on the financial aspect of building Allegiant Stadium and had a hand in the economic analysis of Formula One racing coming to Las Vegas.
“I think there will be a net positive fiscal benefit for the taxpayers in the state of Nevada as a result of the stadium being constructed,” Aguero added. “Because the amount of taxes that will be generated is greater than the amount of the cost of the public contribution.
The A’s have pledged to cover any cost overruns in the construction and operation of a new facility, Aguero said.