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Source : Governor Kathy Hochul
March 29, 2022
Author : Alex Bustillos
On Monday, New York State officials reached an agreement with the Buffalo Bills to construct a new stadium. Construction of the project will see the largest-ever taxpayer contribution for an NFL stadium.
The state will cover $600 million of the project, while Erie County, where the stadium will be constructed, will spend $250 million. Another $200 million will be loaned by the NFL, and another $350 million will come from team owners.
The expenditure of tax dollars from the county and state still await approval from lawmakers, according to the New York Times, which further notes that “the announcement came after months of secretive back-room negotiations among Gov. Kathy Hochul, county officials and the team owners.”
The New York Times further notes that “striking a deal to ensure that the Bills remained in Western New York was a top priority for Ms. Hochul, a Buffalo native and avid Bills fan.”
"I went into these negotiations trying to answer three questions - how long can we keep the Bills in Buffalo, how can we make sure this project benefits the hard-working men and women of Western New York and how can we get the best deal for taxpayers?" New York Governor Hochul said in a Monday press release.
According to Hochul, the new stadium will ensure that the Bills remain in Buffalo for the next 30 years and create 10,000 union jobs.
As the governor’s press release notes, the Project Labor Agreement will require that construction is sourced from unions, however it has not yet been negotiated.
Julie Wood, a spokeswoman for the governor, said that new and existing capital appropriations will fund the taxpayers’ portion of the cost.
However, the project is likely to be derided as “corporate welfare” from left-leaning Democrats, and the announcement comes just four days before the state budget is due, a recipe for heated debate that leaves detractors with little time to conduct a cost-benefit analysis before a vote.