A long-awaited Potomac Nationals (High A; Carolina League) new-ballpark deal may finally happen in 2017, as the team and Prince William County reportedly have agreed on the framework of a financing deal.
No one from Prince William County or the team, including owner Art Silber, are talking about a financing deal built around $35 million in bonds issued by Prince William’s Industrial Development Authority. Silber has been working for years on a new ballpark planned for Stonebridge at Potomac Town Center, and the owner of that development, JBG, has been involved in negotiations as well. While it looks like some final decisions need to be made — hence the silence from the principals involved — it look like the pieces are in place, per documents obtained by InsideNoVa under a Freedom of Information request. From the story:
Obtained through the public records request, a Dec. 13 proposed letter of intent from JBG and the team to County Executive Christopher Martino sheds quite a bit of light on the subject.
At the heart of the deal, the county “will be responsible for the construction of the stadium” and would have to “issue bonds to raise approximately $35 million for the development of the stadium,” according to the letter.
A separate document prepared for the supervisors shows that the county’s Industrial Development Authority would raise that money with bonds, though Stephen Dawson, the authority’s secretary/treasurer, said he has yet to hear from the board on the issue. However, Dawson said that such a proposal would be “in line” with some of the authority’s previous projects.
Next, the county would have to agree to a lease with JBG for the seven-acre plot of land needed for the stadium at a rate of $450,000 per year. The county would then lease the stadium to the team for at least 30 years.
As noted, no public action has been taken on this proposal, and we’ve had plenty of false starts on a new P-Nats ballpark in recent years. So we’ll see in 2017 if this plan actually moves forward. But with a workable plan out there, P-Nats fans may be rewarded for their patience over the years.
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