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Miami says no to land or money to help build stadi


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Miami says no to land or money to help build stadium for Marlins

 

By Sarah Talalay

Staff Writer

Posted December 20 2003

 

The Florida Marlins won't be playing in a new ballpark in Miami -- or perhaps anywhere else -- now that the city of Miami has refused to provide land or help pay for a new stadium.

 

A day after Miami City Commissioners voted to ask the Miami-Dade County Commission to put a referendum requesting a half-cent sales tax for 18 months on the March 9 ballot to raise at least $225 million for a stadium, officials from Miami, Miami-Dade County and the Marlins met to discuss the project. But city and county officials emerged from the meeting Friday discouraged and declared the project DOA in Miami and only on life support elsewhere.

 

"We really cannot find the monies to come up with for the stadium, and the county's really reluctant to put the referendum for a half-cent sales tax on the ballot," said Miami City Manager Joe Arriola, who also argued the Marlins weren't putting enough cash in the project. "As far as the city is concerned, there's not going to be a deal ... this is over."

 

Last month, Miami-Dade County Commissioners pledged $73 million in hotel bed and sports facilities taxes toward the construction of a stadium projected to cost $325 million, if the Marlins would kick in $137 million and a full financing package was reached by March 15. The city was expected to contribute the land. If the stadium was built, the team was to be renamed the Miami Marlins.

 

County officials say they won't ask their residents to tax themselves again after recently approving a half-cent sales tax increase for transit and a small property tax increase for children's services. And particularly not when they plan to put a $1.8 billion general obligation bond for capital improvements before voters in November.

 

"The city doesn't really have a lot of options, in their view, on funding strategies for the land piece," County Manager George Burgess said. "The referendum, in their view, works better for them."

 

The county and the Marlins now are forced to look outside Miami, a task likely to prove difficult.

 

"I suppose it's not impossible," Burgess said. "I think it's going to be tough."

 

Miami-Dade County Mayor Alex Penelas expects Burgess to continue to seek a deal by March 15, according to Penelas' chief of staff Javier Soto.

 

"The mayor assumes the county manager will explore beyond the boundaries of the city of Miami for a new stadium," Soto said. But he didn't sound optimistic either: "This is a big blow to the deal."

 

It's unclear what the Marlins will do, and team officials declined to comment Friday.

 

The beginnings of a financing plan were announced just days after the Marlins won the World Series but included at least a $115 million gap in funding. Miami Beach officials objected to the plan because they think the county owes them $50 million in hotel bed taxes. And without the city of Miami's help, the gap could widen since the county's portion anticipated Miami Arena being torn down to free up hotel bed taxes.

 

Wednesday, the Marlins officially announced the deal that will keep All-Star third baseman Mike Lowell in a Marlins uniform a minimum of one season and maximum of four. Whether Lowell stays through 2007 hinges on the team's ability to secure financing for a ballpark.

 

If stadium plans aren't solidified by Nov. 1, 2004, Lowell can opt out of what potentially is a four-year, $32 million deal. He is guaranteed $6.5 million next season and holds a $7.5 million option for 2005.

 

Without a new facility and its accompanying revenue boost, the Marlins would be off the hook for the remaining $18 million for the final two seasons.

 

"We could not have Mike Lowell on our team if there is no new stadium," team President David Samson said. "That's the bottom line. ... It's not even a discussion. There would not be the revenue, and there is no possibility."

 

The Marlins play at Pro Player Stadium, a football stadium where they pay rent and receive only portions of concession, parking and sign revenue and none of the rental of suites.

 

Sarah Talalay can be reached at stalalay@sun-sentinel.com or 954-356-4173.?

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God f***ing Damn.

 

This city has the worst fans ever. Football, Hockey, Basketball, Baseball, anything.

 

The visiting team comes and its all cheer for them. It's almost like if its "cool" to chear against the home team.

 

This city has the worst politicians also. Sometimes they embarass the hispanic background from which i come from. "After the Florida Turnpike Highway has been paid off, we will discontinue to charge for it" B f***ING S!!!!! Motherf***ing Liars!

 

"If we build it, will you come?" Yeah a**holes, nice way of making yourselfs look good during that moment.

 

I was always skeptical about this, And i praise Loria and Beinfest for trying to save as much money as possible and also respecting the wishes of the true fans by not trading off everyone.

 

I am seriously thinking that if the marlins need to move somewhere else in order to survive, so be it. I rather this team triumph somewhere else than become contracted in the years to come, because with the horrible stadium contract, and the lack of financial support.....The marlins are f***ed in South Florida.

 

Oh and to those fans who go by the belief of "I felt betrayed when the Marlins won in 97 and then were all traded away" f*** YOU ALL. Weve followed the team through the tough and hard times and we have suffered. Dont give me any of that Sissy bulls*** of feeling betrayed a**holes. If you really supported and loved your team you wouldve made the effort to hang on.

 

Im sorry for the rabid venting, but sometimes people just suck

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I have no ties to South Florida, so it's very simple for me to say move the team. I'm trying to be sensitive to you that like this team mainly because it's your hometown team, but this sucks. I want this team to A) continue to exist and B) be competitive consistently and it's looking more and more like at least one of those 2 isn't going to be possible in Miami (or Metro Miami).

 

Seriously, this is becoming a joke. I'd hate to see the team leave and the identity change, but it might be neccessary at this point.

 

So much for that 4-year deal for Lowell.

 

I wonder how much of that extra money we had built up we'll actually spend now.

 

This is like one big swift kick to the gut.

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MIAMI politicians and city officials are full of SH!T thats why the deal is dead. They jumped on the bandwagon way more then any of the South Florida fans, and as soon as they hype died down, they killed the deal. I hope this team moves up north to Broward or Palm Beach Co, where a major source of Season Ticket holders are, and a more respectible fan base.

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MIAMI politicians and city officials are full of SH!T thats why the deal is dead. They jumped on the bandwagon way more then any of the South Florida fans, and as soon as they hype died down, they killed the deal. I hope this team moves up north to Broward or Palm Beach Co, where a major source of Season Ticket holders are, and a more respectible fan base.

Hey your forgetting about us faithful south Miamians down here. I will tell you right now some of the most ardent Marlins fans are in my family and friends and they live right down here. It is all the rich @$$ B****** in Pinecrest who are killing the team. They are afraid of getting wet in the rain and spend there money on material and homes and frankly are the biggest bandwagoners in the history of Marlins. I know because I have to go to school with them....

 

 

Sorry about my venting....

 

 

In any case the Miami Politicians will find a way to get it done since they gave the most perfect spot for a ballpark down here to the Freaking Miami Heat! What sense is there in an Arena on Biscayne! :banghead

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That was bc the Heat and American Airlines put up a lot of the money. That Arena was only $100 sumthing million, a stadium like the Marlins need is 3-4 times more money then that, plus Loria is not Mickey Arison as far as wealth. Any rate that Arena deal is killing the Heat, they are losing money like crazy and finanically would have been better off never building it and staying in Miami Arena, which is just being wasted a block away. I agree there is a very strong fan base still in Miami, but is there more of a fan base in South Miami to N. Miami or from North Miami to Palm Beach?

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:o , Maybe the people who, long ago, said that a team in south florida made no sense had a clue. Maybe the people who said a team in Tampa Bay would never work had a clue. Maybe the people who said Florida could only support one team were right. That the team would be in Orlando close to the attractions and that supporters would therefore come from all around the country. Maybe they were right.

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That was bc the Heat and American Airlines put up a lot of the money. That Arena was only $100 sumthing million, a stadium like the Marlins need is 3-4 times more money then that, plus Loria is not Mickey Arison as far as wealth. Any rate that Arena deal is killing the Heat, they are losing money like crazy and finanically would have been better off never building it and staying in Miami Arena, which is just being wasted a block away. I agree there is a very strong fan base still in Miami, but is there more of a fan base in South Miami to N. Miami or from North Miami to Palm Beach?

And you know what.......

 

 

 

 

Your being a f****** bandwagoner right now....

 

 

 

 

OMG The Sun Sentinel says that Miami doesn't have enough money....

 

 

Get a clue, there in Broward.... :banghead

 

Check the Palm Beach Post.... :banghead

 

 

They say the same exact things.... :banghead

 

 

And Mickey Arison is a jerk in my world....

 

 

You know why there is more of a fan base up there???

 

Because we are stuck down here with the stuck up Pinecrestians.... :banghead

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Orlando can't support their one pro team anyway. The Magic have horrible Fans now and they will prob be moving out of Orlando soon. I like Broward as a prime sports town. The Western portions of the County are very up and coming still and there is a strong Commerical presence to support teams. The Panthers do prettygood considering the size of their Arena, win or lose (and they havent won since their Miami Arena days) they get pretty good support for HOCKEY in South Florida. A Western Broward location could keep the current fan base and possiblely increase it by getting more Coral Springs and West Boca Raton fans to jump on the Sawgrass like they do for Panther games. If not in Western Broward, then somewhere near the water in Downtown Ft. Lauderdale.

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Orlando can't support their one pro team anyway. The Magic have horrible Fans now and they will prob be moving out of Orlando soon. I like Broward as a prime sports town. The Western portions of the County are very up and coming still and there is a strong Commerical presence to support teams. The Panthers do prettygood considering the size of their Arena, win or lose (and they havent won since their Miami Arena days) they get pretty good support for HOCKEY in South Florida. A Western Broward location could keep the current fan base and possiblely increase it by getting more Coral Springs and West Boca Raton fans to jump on the Sawgrass like they do for Panther games. If not in Western Broward, then somewhere near the water in Downtown Ft. Lauderdale.

You are officially an idiot....

 

 

The Panthers had there best year ever in 1999-2000 in terms of points and they were in the ODC at that time.

 

 

And no thank you, a baseball Stadium in Western Broward is a big nono....

 

 

Thats Joe Robbie all over again....

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i dont trust those city and county officals down in Miami, they are currupt. I lived in Miami, i lived 10 minutes from Pro Player (at that time Joe Robbie). I just dont want this team leaving South Florida, ill be happy as long as they get a Stadium deal somewhere down here. Put them in Homestead for all i care, as long as they get a retractible roof i feel they will have good size crowds. Maybe even build the Stadium accross from Pro Player. Share the parking, who knows.

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i dont trust those city and county officals down in Miami, they are currupt. I lived in Miami, i lived 10 minutes from Pro Player (at that time Joe Robbie). I just dont want this team leaving South Florida, ill be happy as long as they get a Stadium deal somewhere down here. Put them in Homestead for all i care, as long as they get a retractible roof i feel they will have good size crowds. Maybe even build the Stadium accross from Pro Player. Share the parking, who knows.

I have lost any respect for you as a knowledgable sports fan...

 

 

One of the reasons they want to move is to be in an area where people will shop, work, and come to the game at night? Wrigley Field, Petco Park anyone?

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i think making it to the Stanley Cup in 96 is considered their best season still, forget points. Just like last yr. was the Marlins best season even tho they had more wins in 97.

You have no f****** clue wth you are talking about....

 

 

 

Stanley Cup in 96 was my favorite Panthers team of all time, but they snuck into the playoffs as the 8th seed..... And yes I believe that was the best Panthers team ever but their best season was in 99-00....

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For what it's worth. I don't know what population base is necessary to sustain a baseball stadium but... about four months ago a Boynton Beach townfather suggested to the local commission that they try to get the Marlins to come to Boynton Beach. There is a large, attractive (and large enough) plot of ground right off I-95 and close to the Tri-Rail station.

It would be easy access from West Palm Beach, Boca Raton and Lauderdale.

An hour drive from Miami.

Doubt that Boynton Beach could foot much of the bill but they could arrange the land. What the hell... we already have the Little League World Series champions,

why not the Marlins, too.

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i dont trust those city and county officals down in Miami, they are currupt. I lived in Miami, i lived 10 minutes from Pro Player (at that time Joe Robbie).

I hope you don't think that Miami and ten minutes from the stadium are the same thing.

 

And this is a huge blow, but it isn't dead. Miami politicians suck and all that, but it can still come down to a vote by the people I believe. The Marlins better get off their asses and campaign heavily so we can get something done.

 

Oh, and anyone else love the timing here? Let's kill the team, by not only announcing we aren't giving them any money, but by announcing it on the day of the non-tender deadline so they can't sign any free agents! Hooray for corrupt Miami politicians!

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i dont trust those city and county officals down in Miami, they are currupt. I lived in Miami, i lived 10 minutes from Pro Player (at that time Joe Robbie).

I hope you don't think that Miami and ten minutes from the stadium are the same thing.

 

And this is a huge blow, but it isn't dead. Miami politicians suck and all that, but it can still come down to a vote by the people I believe. The Marlins better get off their asses and campaign heavily so we can get something done.

 

Oh, and anyone else love the timing here? Let's kill the team, by not only announcing we aren't giving them any money, but by announcing it on the day of the non-tender deadline so they can't sign any free agents! Hooray for corrupt Miami politicians! I really believe there is a conspiracy by Bud Selig to kill the Marlins....now.....

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I remember the Marlins saying that they would build a new stadium from future funds if they got no help...what they should do is accept the $73 million from Miami-Dade county and build a stadium w/o a retractable roof so that it can be cheaper....Thats what the SF Giants did in SF and it worked out for them

Except we need the retractable roof so all the rich stuck Pinecrestians will come...

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:angry

 

This was a good chance for Miami Dade to make some serious dough. More fans, better local economy, then the taxes would go up. What idiots. Now it's goodbye to the Marlins. Mike Lowell has a 1-year contract. Vlad won't come here. The team will have to move. We can all thank Miami-Dade county. I live in Broward, I don't mind going downtown and buying a hot dog before the game, then going to the game. That was more money for the city of Miami. Instead we have buffoons running the joint. No wonder why we can't vote here, they don't give a damn.

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:angry

 

This was a good chance for Miami Dade to make some serious dough. More fans, better local economy, then the taxes would go up. What idiots. Now it's goodbye to the Marlins. Mike Lowell has a 1-year contract. Vlad won't come here. The team will have to move. We can all thank Miami-Dade county. I live in Broward, I don't mind going downtown and buying a hot dog before the game, then going to the game. That was more money for the city of Miami. Instead we have buffoons running the joint. No wonder why we can't vote here, they don't give a damn.

Now you know why this city was broke just a few years ago...

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