Local News

Wake County Commissioners to Discuss Funding for Proposed Arena

Posted December 16, 1996

— Wake County commissioners will meet today to discuss snags in the plan to build a proposed $132 million multi-purpose arena in Raleigh.

County commissioners will debate whether to sink more revenue from hotel room taxes into the arena, a plan that Raleigh City Council members must also approve and one which Mayor Tom Fetzer opposes.

According toThe News & Observer, a majority of commissioners say they do not support giving an extra $60 million for the project.

For the arena to open in early 1999, construction must start this spring.

The funding squabble has irked Felix Sabates Jr., who has been leading a group of investors who want to lure a professional hockey expansion team to Raleigh. The team would play in the proposed new arena, and Sabates said he had been assured that funding for the arena was not in doubt. That uncertainty prompted Sabates to threaten a pullout by the investment group. Several other Southeast cities, including Nashville and Norfolk, are bidding for expansion franchises.

The meeting is set for 4:30 p.m.

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