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Sunday, July 14, 2024

Virginia Bill Could Allow Limitless Funding for Commanders Stadium

  • Virginia has two bills to provide funding for a potential Washington Commanders stadium and "mini-city" complex.
  • The state is expected to provide around $1 billion in funding.
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports/Design: Alex Brooks

Public funding for stadiums often produces controversial dollar totals, but one version of the bill to lure the Washington Commanders to Virginia may provide virtually unlimited funding.

There are two separate bills currently in committee in Richmond to help fund new construction for the team’s replacement of FedEx Field. 

Sources told Front Office Sports that a consolidated bill is expected to emerge from a conference committee with amendments that would limit public financing to around $1 billion of the $3 billion “mini-city” project, which could include a convention center, concert venue, hotels, restaurants, and housing.

Backers of the project expect a vote on the floor before the current legislative session ends Saturday. 

  • Bills in Virginia’s House and Senate allow the team to fund construction through bonds, which it could use tax dollars from the new development to pay off.
  • The House bill places a 20-year limit on the team’s use of tax revenue to repay the bonds, but the Senate one has no such restriction.
  • The Senate bill does prohibit the team using revenue from sports betting and e-commerce to pay off the bonds.

Will Owner Be Ousted?

It remains unclear if Dan Snyder will still own the Commanders when the team moves to a new home.

Owners are reportedly discussing whether Snyder or Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross should be ousted from their roles. Snyder is accused of sexual harassment and workplace misconduct, while Ross is accused of incentivizing losing games.

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