Zoom Zoom - Jeremy Brevard-US PRESSWIRE
The Carolina Panthers have met their first road block in securing more stadium funding.
Jerry Richardson was hoping to add more money to his Panthers' kitty (forgive the pun), by securing additional funding from the North Carolina state government for stadium upgrades. The $62.5 million, in addition to that already planned from the city of Charlotte, would help add escalators, new scoreboards, and other amenities to Bank of America Stadium. In a report today by the Charlotte Observer, governor Pat McCrory is having none of it.
The Panthers are looking for a total renovation of $250-million, and being rebuffed by McCrory was the team's second hit in a week. Lawmakers in Charlotte rejected doubling the city's food and beverage tax, instead using existing tax money. This would give the Panthers an estimated $110-million, and without any funding from the state government, it seems unlikely the organization will meet their public funding goal of more than $200-million.
Whether Richardson should ask the city and state for money at all is a political conversation not worth having in this forum. The natural fear is to assume this could potentially sour the relationship between the Panthers and the Carolinas, but with Los Angeles having stadium issues of their own, it seems unlikely that LA is a credible threat.
It's all posturing and negotiation at this point. Expect this floundering to last a little longer, before the actual business gets done and both sides can reach a funding agreement.