Half of Dolphins’ share of stadium reno could be paid by NFL

Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross has been pitching his $400 million renovation plan for Sun Life Stadium as a 50/50 split with the public, but turns out he’s left something out, reports Douglas Hanks of the Miami Herald:

The National Football League may help Stephen Ross pay his share of a $400 million renovation of Sun Life Stadium.

Like other NFL owners seeking better stadiums, Ross would likely pursue league funds reserved for the projects, according to interviews with team insiders. The program could mean tens of millions of dollars in league money for the Dolphins as the team pushes for Florida and Miami-Dade to pay for just under half of the renovation.

I actually went over the G-4 language with Hanks last week — it’s painfully convoluted, but it looks like Ross could be eligible for up to $100 million in NFL loans for the project, which since they’d be paid back out of club seat revenue that the team would otherwise have to share with the league, is effectively a grant. So the share is more accurately decribed as half public, one-quarter team, one-quarter NFL. But “I’m putting up $100 million, why can’t the public put up $200 million?” doesn’t sound as good as “the biggest private commitment in U.S. history,” does it?

6 comments on “Half of Dolphins’ share of stadium reno could be paid by NFL

  1. Neil, I’ve read the G-4 rule before and looked at it again and I think it’s more than $100 mil of G-4 funds. There’s the $50 mil deductible on renovations (1a), that’s how they get a $250 mil G-4 max on a $450 million (1c) and over renovation.

  2. That’s not what the language says — it says specifically that it’s matching funds up to $100 million of the first $250 million. Which would mean that the “$50 million deductible” is actually the *last* $50 million of the first $250 million, which is backwards from what “deductible” usually means, but that’s sure what it seems to say.

  3. No, the deductible is the first $50 million of the total private contribution on a renovation, which is automatically covered by the G4 loan.

    As it reads in (1a) & (1b) The G-4 loan covers the initial $50 million of private contribution + $100 million of private contribution on the project cost from $50 million to $250 million + $25 million on (1b) 50% of the private contribution (capped at $50 mil) on the project costs from $250 mil to $400 mil.

    Ross gets $175 million G-4 loan as it reads on a renovation.

  4. “1a. For up to $200 million of project costs for a new stadium and up to $250 million of project costs for a stadium renovation, the League-Level Lender will advance a loan equal to the lesser of the amount of the Private Contribution to such costs and $100 million.”

    No matter how you figure it, “the lesser of the Private Contribution and $100 million” can’t be more than $100 million. So the 1a amount is capped at $100 million.

    1b only kicks in if there’s been at least a $150 million private contribution to the first $250 million in costs, and then funds 50% of the next $150 million in total costs. (There’s a parenthetical implying that the G-4 loan here is capped at $50 million, but it isn’t actually spelled out.) Unfortunately, it’s never spelled out whether the “Private Contribution” includes the money being supplied by the league — if it does, then if we assign $100 million in private money to the first $250 million in costs, then 1b covers another $50 million, making the total G-4 loan $150 million. If not, then it’s just $100 million.

    I’ll try to ask the league about this today. Until then, the only thing we can really be sure of here is that whoever wrote this language took one too many hits to the head.

  5. You’re confusing a renovation with new construction and getting hung up on the poor use of “deductible”, in fact you completely omitted the $50 million in G-4 funds that comes from the “deductible”.

    The text clearly states that 1a caps at $150 million for a renovation, 1b caps at $50 million, and 1c caps at another $50 million. That’s how you get to the $250 million total in G-4 funding for a renovation. It’s not implied, it’s spelled out, albeit poorly. (1b)”League Level lender will provide up to $50 million of such costs”.

    Under 1a G-4 funding is calculated by taking the $50 million “deductible” and adding “the lesser of the Private Contribution and $100 million” which equals $150 million.

    Read it again, it’s not that difficult.

    Ross gets $175 million G-4 loan as it reads on a renovation.

  6. I read it again. I don’t see where it says what you say it says.

    Anyone else feel like playing along?

    http://media.signonsandiego.com/news/documents/2011/12/14/NFL_on_its_new_stadium_loan_program.pdf