Kriseman "would like to get it done within the next month but definitely before Christmas'' so he can bring it to the City Council for approval, Council Chairman Bill Dudley said last week.This in and of itself is nothing new, but Charlie Frago and Stephen Nohlgren provide some nice behind-the-scenes details at what's being ironed out.
No surprise, the penalty the team would pay for leaving remains a major sticking point, as it did throughout Bill Foster's tenure as mayor:
[L]ast summer, Foster and the Rays came close to a deal based on a different compensation scheme. There would be no up-front fee just to go look — but the final buyout price would be arranged in advance.The big challenge for Kriseman and city attorneys is how to let the Rays look in Tampa while still protecting the city's ironclad contract. If the city wouldn't suffer "incalculable" damages anymore with a Rays move to Tampa, why would they have any claim of "incalculable" damages in a move to another state?
Foster reportedly was asking about $5 million for each season lost, and the Rays were reportedly offering around $2 million to $3 million.
The Times adds Kriseman may once again face resistance from St. Pete's city council, just as a proposed Rays amendment did in 2012:
Council member Amy Foster said her constituents are frustrated by the long, secretive negotiations. "A lot of people feel like these negotiations should take place in the sunshine," she said.Then, there's the issue of how to pay for a $500 million stadium, the land under it, and any damages to St. Pete. But why worry about that stuff until there's another city offering a subsidy package we can compete against?