April 16, 2014

NFL News: Cleveland Browns and city of Cleveland announce stadium agreement

The details are coming in, but here are the high level bullet points based on what I heard during the press conference. I’ve tried my very best to get these as accurate as possible. It’s difficult with dollar amounts flying around, but here they are.

  • The Cleveland Browns are fronting the money for the stadium improvements.
  • The city of Cleveland will pay $2 million per year over the next 15 years. Mayor Jackson stated that this is in essence $22 million due to the time value of money.
  • The city will look to pass a renewal of the sin tax (as was expected.)
  • Mayor Jackson claims that the $2 million per season will not affect the current levels of service the city is providing.
  • The city has $24 million sitting in a capital fund today as a result of the sin tax earmarked for repairs
  • The city will use $12 million of the $24 million after the second year of Browns spending to further maintain the stadium via capital repairs. These improvements are unknown other than the dollar amount today.

So there you have it. Right now, the city is going to contribute $42 million if you use really elementary calculations and something less than that if you used more nuanced financial calculations. Assuming the Mayor’s calculations are correct, the value of the 15-year contribution is $22 million and then sometime in 2016 (I think) the city will give $12 million.

We’ll keep you updated as more details come out.

[Related: Cleveland Browns stadium funding is a tale of taste and technicalities]

  • Ezzie Goldish

    That’s not a bad deal for the city at all.

    Also means the Browns are investing $120M or so into this stadium. In case anyone was worried, they aren’t moving anytime soon.

  • mgbode

    it was a 30yr lease and this takes it to the end of that lease. still, I agree that it is always good to see confirmation of commitment (especially from a new owner).

  • nj0

    Yeah. I’m sure a deal like this is ridiculously complicated when you get to the fine print so I would never be too passionate in saying it is good or bad…. but it sure seems a lot better than I expected considering the city’s existing contractual obligations.

    Sidenote: I don’t know if the photo the PD used was from a press conference that was held today or some time in the past, but you’d think that old Joe could have shaved for an appearance like this. The bums lost, Mr. Banner.

  • Steve

    It’s not a bad deal, unless you consider the alternative – why should the city be paying anything?

  • Joe Banner

    It’s No-shave November!!!!

  • ch

    Because another city WOULD be willing to pay.
    The stadium/Browns games generates money for the city in ways you clearly can’t see.

    I personally think it’s great the team is doing all this.

  • The_Matt_Of_Akron

    I don’t like how a tax on alcohol and tobacco is called a Sin Tax. I think Fun Tax fits better, especially if they are using it to fund the Factory of Sadness.

  • Steve

    Maybe, maybe not on another city. The NFL wants to be in Cleveland because it knows it can make a ton of money there. The city picking up Jimmy’s tab, and indirectly helping him pay his fraud defense lawyers is only gravy on top.

    And if you think stadium deals are good investments for cities, I have a bridge you might be interested in buying.

  • Toddyus

    Agreed, considering that based on what’s been reported, the city isn’t kicking in really anymore than it was obligated to kick in anyway. Say what you want about Frank Jackson, but this is one area where his narrow focus on Cleveland has benefited the city. This deal would not have looked this favorable to Cleveland under Mike White…

  • ch

    The city is picking up the tab? No it’s not… its money already owed from the lease agreement.

    When the Browns moved, MANY MANY cities got new stadiums the following years. Why? Because they were scared if they didn’t put at least some city money into a building the team would leave.
    So please, commend the Browns for being so generous. Your egregious lawyer thing isn’t warranted so I’ll ignore that.
    Stadium deals are like anything, it’s nice until you have to fix it. The team generates a lot of positives for the city, money included.

  • Steve_Not_Chad

    Super-Fun Tax

  • Steve

    Any dollar the city has to give to the team is a dollar that can’t be spent on something that will help the city out in a better way.

    We’ve gone over the move debate already here. I’ll refer you to my previous statements.

    Commend the Browns? Guffaw. As bup said, Stockholm Syndrome at its finest.

    I don’t think the lawyer comment is unwarranted. A shyster who allegedly scammed many of his customers is now passing his tab to a broke city. That should set off some serious red flags.

    Read Field of Schemes, stadium deals do not end up revenue sources for cities. They’re money pits. Gateway almost bankrupted the Cleveland Public Schools.