St. Louis Post-Dispatch wrote:Major league baseball's return to Washington might be for one year only.
The District of Columbia Council voted Tuesday night to require private financing for at least half the cost of a new ballpark for the Expos, a move that might cause the commissioner's office to reopen the search for a long-term home for the franchise.
Capping an 11 1/2 hours of contentious debate, the council voted 7-6 to approve legislation to finance construction of a ballpark. But the bill contained the amendment on private financing, a provision not contained in the September agreement between the Expos and Washington Mayor Anthony A. Williams.
"We will review the amendments and the legislation as passed and have a response," said Bob DuPuy, baseball's chief operating officer.
If the law stands, baseball's likely response would be to have the team play the 2005 season at Washington's RFK Stadium, where it would be known as the Nationals, while baseball's search committee resumes negotiations with cities that desire the team.
The Expos were bought by the other 29 teams before the 2002 season and, from the start, baseball owners insisted a publicly financed stadium for the team be a component of any move.
Council Chair Linda Cropp offered the private-financing provision, saying it would be crucial for her support. She was considered the swing vote on the 13-member council.
Jack Evans, baseball's most passionate advocate on the council, said the provision could be a deal breaker. "This gives baseball an out," he said.
TheYanks04 wrote:Why they just do not contract that franchise out and end this joke I do not know. Not only are they wasting money on keeping that team going, they are paying the likes of Angelos off in the process.
You need to contract two teams if you do - baseball isn't a sport that can have an odd number of teams. Just move them to Vegas in 2006. They want a team.
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Just because Selifg is an a** and has his cronies around in KC and elsewhere does not mean it is not the right thing to do. KC and Milw are both horrible franchises which refuse to compete in today's market and are nothing but leaches on the rest of MLB. 200 M for a franchise is nothing by today's standard. Sort of the lowest it can go without being bankrupt or in the red.
What a joke of a display. Completely inept politicians playing games.
I can completely understand why the DC council voted not to give a team prime land and a stadium - simple fiscal responsibility. Having a private partner to shoulder half the cost is smart, especially in DC where the citizens of that city arent very well off and cant really afford that type of tax hike. It was a wise decision by the council.
On the other hand, you have a Mayor who obviously overstepped his authority by courting this team and promising something he had no right to promise - the stadium. Who here thinks he ran his campaign to get elected on the promise of bringing MLB to DC? Id bet my shirt on it.
DC is one of the most ineptly run districts(cities) in America today, so to see this sort of shennanigans happening here again should come as no suprise. Its actually quite sad that these type of liars and thieves are elected and reelected (Barry) there over and over again. When will the residents learn?
If baseball wants a new stadium for the team, send it to Vegas - Im sure they would have absolutely no problem coming up with either private or public financing for it there.
Which again begs the question, if the people are generally poor, and baseball has failed there miserably in the past, then why are they moving a franchise there? Who is going to support this team? How are they going to generate gate or TV revenues in a largely poor, urban area?