Field of Schemes
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April 13, 2004

D.C. council to MLB: Put up or shut up

Washington, D.C. city council finance committee chair Jack Evans has reiterated the council's stance on funding a new stadium to bring the Montreal Expos to town: Give us the team first, then we'll talk. "I'm not going to go out there and bid against myself," said Evans. "That's the issue. I think if MLB commits to Washington, at the end of the day you'll get 11 of the 13 [council members] on board." It's unclear whether "on board" means writing a blank check for Mayor Anthony Williams' $340 million stadium proposal, or just willingness to sit down and negotiate; other council members have expressed qualms about the mayor's finance plan, which would combine a sales-tax TIF, a ticket surcharge, and the restoration of a tax on large downtown businesses that helped fund the Washington Wizards' MCI Center.

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