It’s Friday, so let’s celebrate the end of a long week with a sad tale of how not to write an arena lease, courtesy of the Sacramento Bee:
The Sacramento Kings more than tripled the amount they will charge Sacramento State for commencement at the new Golden 1 Center compared to their old home, according to a document obtained by The Sacramento Bee.
Last spring, the university paid $59,842 to hold seven spring graduation ceremonies at Sleep Train Arena.
Sacramento State’s new contract with the Kings Arena Limited Partnership asks the university to pay a base fee of $50,000 plus “additional charges” not listed in the contract to have graduation at Golden 1 Center. University officials estimate those charges, which include traffic management, camera operators, lighting and stagehands will add another $140,595 to the bill – for a total cost of $190,595.
This is sad and bad for the state university campus, which will now be out an additional $130,000 that it could have used for, you know, school stuff. But hey, vagaries of the market and all, so what you gonna do, right?
Except that Sacramento’s deal with the Kings was that the city could use the new arena for nine “civic events” per year — and the Sacramento State graduation, which was previously held at the Kings’ old arena, wasn’t included. (It’s expected that all nine this year will be high school graduations.) So instead, one side effect of giving the Kings $255 million in city subsidies for their new arena is that the local university has to pay more for their graduation costs, because the venue is shinier now. It’s the kind of thing that the city could easily have remedied by demanding that Sacramento State get access to the arena in exchange for throwing public money at it, but Kevin Johnson had other things on his mind at the time.
Of course, another side effect is that the city of Sacramento is now out $255 million. You can spend the next three days determining which is the insult, and which the injury — happy weekend!