Parking, possibly the most difficult problem the Oakland Raiders face as the team works toward receiving the funds necessary to build its planned 65,000-seat indoor football stadium, will be a key topic in Thursday’s Las Vegas Stadium Authority meeting.
But don’t expect the Raiders to roll out any detailed plans then for where they’ll find the 16,250 parking spaces required by Clark County for games and other events.
The board gathers at 9 a.m. at the Clark County Government Center. The 30-item agenda is the most extensive in the authority board’s history.
The board will review most of an estimated 39 documents related to finishing a stadium development agreement that, when signed off, will enable the Raiders to access $750 million in public funds for construction.
The discussion about parking will likely occur when the board addresses a lease agreement between the authority and the LV Stadium Events Company LLC, the Raiders’ subsidiary that will manage the scheduling of events in the stadium.
Along the way, the board will consider a personal seat license marketing and sales agreement that spells out the budget for revenue generated through sales of a license that gives holders the right to buy tickets; a non-relocation agreement that assures the Raiders will stay in Las Vegas over the 30-year term of the deal; a joint-use agreement with UNLV that enables the university’s football team to access the stadium; and a resolution that assures Clark County that all the requirements of Senate Bill 1 have been met.
“There are literally dozens of documents here, but the reality is that everyone has been looking at these for months,” Jeremy Aguero, principal for Las Vegas-based Applied Analysis, which serves as the Stadium Authority’s staff, said Monday. “These are not new documents.”
But something that is new is a five-paragraph section that addresses stadium parking and protects the authority and the public should the Raiders fail to meet their obligations.
“Parking and transportation infrastructure is the responsibility of the Raiders,” Aguero said. “It’s always been the responsibility of the Raiders and the team has been committed to that since day one, but (the fact the team has been working on it) always seems to be left out of the equation.”
While at the board’s February meeting, Raiders President Marc Badain said the parking issue would be addressed Thursday, he didn’t explain how it would be addressed.
Working ‘on multiple fronts’
“I think they (the Raiders) are working on multiple fronts to try and develop the best possible solution for the stadium and for the Raiders,” Aguero said.
While many have anticipated Badain would be making an announcement about a land transaction — which could still happen — the more likely scenario is that the Raiders will agree to the terms of new language in the lease agreement that addresses parking.
The new clause says, “StadCo (the Raiders subsidiary) shall provide and maintain sufficient parking facilities pursuant to the requirements of the county development agreement and consistent with first-class, premier NFL facilities currently in operation or approved for construction by the NFL until the term expiration date …”
After the introductory phrase, the document provides four remedies the Stadium Authority could take if the Raiders fail to meet their obligations.
— After notifying the Raiders of deficiencies, the authority could develop its own parking operations by tapping the capital improvement fund designed for future stadium improvements and upkeep. That would penalize the Raiders by having less available for other capital projects. An estimated $5 million would go into that fund every year from anticipated hotel room tax revenue. It also enables the authority to sue the Raiders if necessary.
— The authority could take over the stadium onsite parking concession and collect those fees to develop parking options.
— The authority could take over any offsite parking concessions and collect those fees to develop parking options.
— The authority could enter a contract with a third party at the Raiders’ expense to provide the necessary parking.
Commission meeting April 3
While most of the agreements to be considered by the authority board are expected to be approved and will be a part of the last forum for potential modifications, there’s still a review process ahead by Clark County and the NFL. The final approval is expected to be made April 3 when Clark County commissioners consider a bond ordinance that would put public money in the team’s hands.
Another important element that may not arise Thursday but must be determined by April 3 is the guaranteed maximum price of the project. The Raiders worked on that with contractor Mortenson Construction Co. last week, but it’s unclear whether that will be disclosed Thursday.
“Even after Thursday, there’s a lot of work to do before we can take a victory lap,” Aguero said.
Nearing the finish line
Thursday’s meeting of the Las Vegas Stadium Authority marks the conclusion of the board’s process of approving documents necessary for the construction of the planned 65,000-seat indoor football stadium for the Oakland Raiders.
But there are still a few steps necessary before it’s all done:
*Documents approved Thursday will be forwarded for review by at least one of the National Football League’s 31 committees, most likely the Stadium Committee chaired by Pittsburgh Steelers owner Art Rooney II, in early March. Documents also will be reviewed by Clark County and by the Bank of America, which is providing a loan to the Raiders. Any of those entities could ask for tweaks or modifications and send them back to the Stadium Authority.
*The Stadium Authority would consider proposed modifications either at the board’s regularly scheduled March 15 meeting or at a special March 22 meeting. The revised version would then be presented to NFL owners meeting in Orlando March 25-28.
*At their meetings, the owners must consent to the stadium development agreement and, in compliance with Senate Bill 1, the NFL must formally document that the Raiders will be allowed to relocate to Las Vegas. Owners already have informally agreed to that. The Stadium Authority will then have to meet between March 25 and April 3 to validate the NFL’s actions and give the document the final okay.
*The finished document goes to the Clark County Commission April 3 when it will consider an ordinance for the sale of bonds, the proceeds of which would be used by the Raiders to build the stadium. Those are the bonds that are backed by revenue generated by the 0.88-percentage-point increase in the county’s hotel room tax.