Kucinich probes Yanks bonds

Rep. Dennis Kucinich, whose Domestic Policy Subcommittee of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee has already held a couple of hearings into stadium financing (the first of which I testified at), has sent letters to the New York Yankees and several local government agencies demanding details of how the assessment of the Yanks’ new stadium’s value was arrived at. This, you’ll recall, is key to whether the team’s plan to get subsidized tax-exempt bonds by pretending its rent payments are really property taxes; the city Independent Budget Office has previously questioned whether the new stadium is really worth as much as the city says it is, which would make the whole deal illegal.

The New York City Department of Finance, New York City Economic Development Corporation, National Park Service, Internal Revenue Service, and the Yankees have been given until August 5 to respond with the requested information. Mark your calendars.

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2 comments on “Kucinich probes Yanks bonds

  1. So what happens if the funding is declared illegal? Are they to play at the “Old” Yankee’s Stadium until they (the Yankees) come up with the cash to pay the contractor?

  2. The IRS already approved the first set of bonds, so even if it should be illegal, I’m not sure there’s anything that can be done to reverse that. It would affect the next set of bonds the Yanks have asked for, though, as well as future stadium and arena projects like the Nets arena in Brooklyn.

    As for what happens if the Yankees don’t get more bonds approved, they’ve both said that it’s vital to the project, and that the project will go ahead regardless, so parse that however you see fit.

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