Jacksonville mayor tells council to “stop stalling” and vote on $200m Jaguars subsidy

If you were still wondering if Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan is really asking for public funding for “major” stadium renovations at the same time as he’s demanding $200 million in subsidies for a new development in his stadium parking lot, we now have confirmation that yes, he really is:

[Jacksonville city council finance committee chair Matt] Carlucci said a vote on Lot J should only happen if the development is bundled with stadium improvements and an extension of the Jags’ lease at TIAA Bank Field, set to expire in 2030. He said if the Jags were to leave Jacksonville in the future, the city would still be on the hook for Lot J.

“The stadium, Lot J and a lease extension are all linked together, and if we don’t do that right, the taxpayers will never forgive us,” Carlucci said.

That’s an excellent point, in that giving Khan $200 million without even asking for a lease extension seems, I believe the technical city-planning term is “nutso.” Though giving him $200 million for the Lot J development plus maybe an equal amount for stadium renovations at the same time would be equally nutso, unless he agrees to a lease extension until the 32nd century.

Carlucci is also asking for more time to evaluate the deal(s), as the Lot J plan is currently scheduled to be voted on by the Downtown Investment Authority tomorrow, discussed by the council on Thursday, and then voted on as early as next week. Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry, who designed the deal, is having none of that “due diligence” balderdash:

Do you want to take your time to think about devoting hundreds of millions of public dollars to a private stadium development project, or do you want to be an NFL city? Don’t think too long, there are plenty of other cities who would love to … what’s that, which cities? I said to stop stalling!

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4 comments on “Jacksonville mayor tells council to “stop stalling” and vote on $200m Jaguars subsidy

  1. It’s interesting how the Jags fell into their own booby trap. From their perspective, lease extensions are tied only to new stadiums or major renovations. But from the government’s perspective, ANY team related kickback typically requires a lease extension. Shad & crew really stepped in it on this one.

    1. The other issue is, the Jags cannot extend their lease right now, no matter what type of stadium subsidy they might get offered.

      Even if Florida/Duval/Jacksonville were to offer Shad a brand new, fully paid for, totally modern stadium, he would have to decline. The market simply is not tenable for an NFL team until (unless?) the advertising & sponsorship apocalypse ends.

  2. I dunno…$400 million in giveaways for each win this season seems excessive. I mean, $100 million per win is reasonable, but $400 million per win…ridiculous!

    I think Mayor Lenny Curry meant to say “Are you a loser city or not?!” in his tantrum text message. And the answer is loser city “led” by a loser.

    Wasn’t deer-in-the-headlights Curry the same guy who promised taxpayers of Jacksonville that no city taxpayer funding would be used in the Republican National Convention in Jacksonville that went ka-blooey. Oh, only a few hundred thousand $$$ was spent before the Jacksonville RNC convention/superspreader event was mercifully cancelled. Fiscal responsibility!!!!

  3. If they are going to attach a lease extension, they also need to add a clause prohibiting the Jags from playing home games anywhere except the current stadium. Remove Khan’s ability to ship 1-2 home games to London every season.

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