Let's move to the Thursday stories on the stadium battle. In the Post, we have "Private Stadium Funding Canceled, Deutsche Bank Deal Collapses
": "A District government plan to use $246 million in private financing from Deutsche Bank to help build a new baseball stadium has collapsed, a political blow to the D.C. Council, which spent months pushing to reduce public investment in the project. D.C. Chief Financial Officer Natwar M. Gandhi said the deal has been called off in part because the bank was seeking a $5 million fee to structure the financing arrangement. But another complication emerged yesterday when bank spokesman Ted Meyer said the bank had a signed contract with the District and remains entitled to the payment if the city uses the bank's strategy." (What? A snafu surrounding the stadium? How un-US-u-al!) The article is chock full of council members backpedaling like mad from the Deutsche Bank private financing plan, which of course was not part of Mayor Williams's original financing plan, it was added after the council insisted on private financing options being investigated. UPDATE:
The WashTimes's story is "Mayor: Lease vote will go off Tuesday
", saying that the council should have by Friday the information they need on the plans to have the construction companies and the AWC be responsible for construction/land acquisition cost overruns (although the contracts themselves may not be done by then). Some council members are expressing skepticism. If the council vote fails, the city will have to go to arbitration with Major League Baseball. Fasten your seat belts. it's going to be a bumpy ride.
Today's lease stories: from The Post, "Stadium Pact To Be Revised For Financing
," and from the WashTimes, "Council fails to reach deal on stadium lease
." No one is leaping up and down with joy about the new agreement, and while Mayor Bow Tie says he'll get the documentation about the construction agreement to the council by Friday, council members appear to be suspicious of any promises that aren't backed up with legally binding documents, so a Feb. 7 vote is looking kind of iffy. UPDATE:
And here is the AP story on the mayor's comments during his weekly briefing
today. Guess what? He's optimistic! UPDATE, 9:50 pm
: NBC 4 says that Mayor Tony is getting tired of it all
, and saying that it's time to put up or shut up, and vote on the agreeement: "I think it's now time to have a vote. I do not have any intention whatsoever this time of withdrawing the legislation. I think we just need to have a vote. And if you want baseball, this is what we have."