Mark David Richards
Council Period 12
Council Period 13
Council Period 14
Government and People
Anacostia Waterfront Corporation
Boards and Com
Chief Financial Officer
Chief Management Officer
Elections and Ethics
Housing and Community Dev.
Capital Revitalization Corp.
Planning and Econ. Dev.
Planning, Office of
Public Service Commission
Regional Mobility Panel
Sports and Entertainment Com.
University of DC
Water and Sewer Administration
Youth Rehabilitation Services
Issues in DC Politics
DC General, PBC
Public Benefit Corporation
Tax Rev Comm
Term limits repeal
Voting rights, statehood
Williams’s Fundraising Scandals
Cardozo Shaw Neigh.Assoc.
Committee of 100
Fed of Citizens Assocs
League of Women Voters
What Is DCWatch?
|NO DC Taxes for Baseball
|For immediate release:
November 8, 2004
Ed Lazere, 202-408-1080
Chris Weiss, 202-222-0746
NO DC Taxes for Baseball! Campaign Calls for a Better Stadium Deal,
Applauds Chairman Cropp's Unwillingness to Accept Baseball “At Any
The baseball stadium deal that Mayor Williams negotiated with Mayor
League Baseball should be re-negotiated to shift costs and financial risks
to the new team owners, according to a set of principles laid out today by
the No DC Taxes for Baseball campaign. The coalition also wants more
benefits of the stadium to flow to the District rather than the team.
Council Chair Linda Cropp's effort to limit the cost of a new stadium
— by proposing to build it at RFK — should be applauded, because it
acknowledges that hte Mayor's plan to bring baseball to DC “at any
cost” is financially risky. The No DC Taxes for Baseball campaign has
not taken a position on Ms. Cropp's proposal, though it believes the
proposal should be considered seriously if it can reduce the overall cost
of the deal and if non-financial issues (such as neighborhood support) can
Beyond lowering overall construction costs, however, the Campaign
believes that more of the costs and risks of the stadium should be borne
by the team owners who stand to profit.
- The new team owners should be required to pay a substantial share of
stadium construction costs. Under the mayor's proposal, the team's
only contribution would be a $5.5 million annual lease payment. No DC
Taxes for Baseball calls on the Council to require the team also to
pay some of the up-front costs, so that the size of DC's stadium bond
could be reduced.
- The District's overall stadium subsidy -- including costs for
construction and for infrastructure improvements around the stadium --
should be capped. Liability for cost overruns should fall squarely on
the team. Under the mayor's proposal, the District would pay for all
"Major League Baseball has unfairly demanded that the District
bear most of the costs and risks of the stadium, while preserving all of
the benefits for the team owners," said Ed Lazere, a representative
of the Campaign. "The DC Council has got to be able to get a better
deal for DC residents."
In addition to these changes, the No DC Taxes for Baseball Campaign
calls on the Council to seek the following improvements to the stadium
- The provision requiring the District to pay the team for lost
profits if the stadium opens late should be eliminated.
- The provision limiting the District's use of the stadium to 12 days
a year should be eliminated. (Chairman Cropp also opposed this.) The
District should be able to use the stadium as often as it wants, as
long as that does not interfere with the baseball schedule. In
addition, if the team chooses to sublease the stadium for a
non-baseball event, revenues should be shared with the District rather
than going entirely to the team.
- The team's lease payment currently is set to rise at just two
percent per year, but not at all if attendance in the prior year was
below-average. This should be changed to require an annual increase at
least at the rate of inflation.
"Many people want baseball back in Washington, but not at any
cost," said Chris Weiss, a representative of the No DC Taxes for
Baseball Campaign. "We cannot afford to hand a blank check over to
Major League Baseball."