Local News

Wake County Commissioners to Discuss Funding for Proposed Arena

Posted Updated

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

This round belonged to county commissioners who debatedwhether to sink more revenue from hotel room taxesinto the arena, a plan that Raleigh CityCouncil members must also approve and one which Mayor Tom Fetzer opposes.

According toThe News & Observer, a majority ofcommissioners say they do not support giving an extra $60 million for theproject.

Whether that's true or not, no decision was forthcoming from themeeting by 6 p.m. Monday.

Commissioner Leo Tew told WRAL TV5 News that there will be an arena,but it probably won't house an expansion hockey team.

Project Director Sims Hinds says his people are still trying to moveforward because only two of the nine cities competing for the new teamhave funding in place.

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

The funding squabble has irked Felix Sabates Jr., who has beenleading a group of investors who want to lure a professional hockeyexpansion 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 indoubt. That uncertainty prompted Sabates to threaten a pullout by theinvestment group. Several other Southeast cities, including Nashville andNorfolk, are bidding for expansion franchises.

The next step here, according to Tew, is for county commissioners tomeet with city council for further discussion.

Representatives of the investors say time is running short, but fundingcould still come from elsewhere.

Copyright 2024 by Capitol Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.