Las Vegas plan to lure Raiders with NFL stadium passes second major hurdle

FILE - In this April 28, 2016, file photo, Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis, center, meets with Raiders fans after speaking at a meeting of the Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee in Las Vegas. Nevada lawmakers convene Monday, Oct. 10, 2016, to consider raising taxes in the Las Vegas area to help fund a $1.9 billion football stadium, a $1.4 billion convention center expansion and more police officers to protect the additional tourists. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

The Nevada Legislature has signed off on a plan that would use $750 million in public money to build an NFL stadium in Las Vegas, despite opposition to a project partly funded by billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson. A cadre of lobbyists for the project worked hard to firm up enough of the shaky votes to meet the necessary two-thirds threshold and scraped by with the minimum amount of support Friday when lawmakers called for a quick vote without the customary speeches. Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval, who's been supportive of the project, is expected to sign the deal Monday in Las Vegas.

It's exciting. But this is really about jobs, and I think at the end of the day people saw this as a fantastic economic stimulus package.

Andy Abboud, chief lobbyist for casino mogul Adelson's Las Vegas Sands

The Nevada Senate gave final approval to some minor changes, after the Assembly voted 28-13 and the Senate voted 16-5 in favor of the bill. The measure would raise hotel taxes by up to 1.4 percentage points in the Las Vegas area to fund a convention center expansion and build a 65,000-seat domed stadium. Proponents say the plan to draw the Raiders from Oakland will bring 25,000 construction jobs and 14,000 permanent jobs to the Las Vegas area and help take the region's all-important tourism industry to the next level. Opponents complained that the deal gave money to a project backed by billionaire Adelson, who could afford to pay for the whole thing himself.

I would like to thank Governor Sandoval, the Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee, and the members of the Nevada Legislature on this historic day. All parties have worked extremely hard to develop and approve this tremendous stadium project that will serve as a proud new home for the entire Raider Nation.

Raiders owner Mark Davis
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Public funding

The public contribution will be larger in raw dollars than for any other NFL stadium, although the public's share of the costs - 39 percent - is smaller than for stadiums in cities of a similar size, such as Indianapolis, Cleveland and Cincinnati.



Outlandish expectations?

Proponents project 451,000 new visitors will come to Las Vegas as a result of the stadium, ushering in $620 million in economic impact. That's based on the stadium hosting 46 events, including 10 NFL games, 6 UNLV football games and a variety of concerts, sports and other events. Critics pointed out that some outside economists, including Stanford professor and sports economist Roger Noll, have panned the deal as a boondoggle based on outlandish financial expectations.

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