County OKs talks on Raiders stadium
oakland, calif.» A late bid to keep the Oakland Raiders from moving took a step forward Tuesday after Alameda County supervisors approved opening negotiations with an investment group on a $1.3 billion stadium project.
If the Oakland City Council approves as well, the city and county can start negotiating a formal agreement with private investors for a stadium project that includes $350 million in public money by way of land and future revenue. The City Council was scheduled to consider the issue Tuesday night.
The push for a new stadium project is being led by Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott and former quarterback Rodney Peete, who are working with Fortress Investment Group. Three of five county supervisors voted yes after more than three hours of discussion and testimony in a room sparkling with sports celebrities.
Lott said after the vote that the work is just beginning.
“We still have a long ways to go. We still have to convince the NFL. We still have to convince (Raiders owner) Mark Davis. We’ve got a long ways to go, but today is a great day and a great moment for Raider Nation,” he said.
Earlier this year, Mark Davis said he was committed to moving the Raiders to Las Vegas, where a $1.9 billion stadium project has been approved. Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf vowed to continue working on a counter-proposal for the Raiders to stay at the Oakland Coliseum.
A move to Nevada is not certain, although a vote by the NFL on whether to allow the move is possible as soon as January. Nevada will raise $750 million from a hotel tax to fund the stadium with billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson contributing $650 million and the Raiders and NFL kicking in $500 million.
The Raiders must get approval from 24 of 32 NFL owners to move. NFL owners will receive an update on the stadium situation when they meet near Dallas on Wednesday.