Rebuilding Falcons piece by piece

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Re: Rebuilding Falcons piece by piece

Post  RedMagma on Wed Jan 02, 2008 2:44 am

Taxpayers will fund Yankees' VIP parking, NYC gets less money


http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/2008/01/02/2008-01-02_taxpayers_will_fund_yankees_vip_parking_.html




The Yankees and hundreds of their VIPs will get free valet parking for the next 40 years, courtesy of New York taxpayers.

The startling revelation of yet another subsidy for the richest team in baseball is buried deep in the fine print of a $237 million tax-exempt bond offering that city officials quietly issued the week before Christmas.

The documents say a $70 million state subsidy for parking improvements for the new Yankee Stadium (slated to open next year) has been earmarked for a new 660-car valet parking garage where virtually all the spaces will be reserved for the free, year-round use of the Yankees and their VIPs.

That's not the only shocking disclosure found in the 500-page bond document.

Others include:

* The total cost of the parking expansion project has zoomed to $340 million - $80 million more than city officials announced only eight months ago, when the directors of the city Industrial Development Agency gave preliminary approval to the bond issue. The money is meant to pay for three new garages, refurbishing half a dozen open-air lots and replacing lost parkland due to construction.

* Game-day parking prices for the general public will more than double from $14 last year to $29 in 2010. They could hit $35 by 2014.

* In addition to 600 free valet parking spaces for the Yankees, 120 game-day parking spaces will be reserved for the free use of the private cars of city cops assigned to the stadium, and an additional 130 on nongame days for city vehicles on "official business."

When Mayor Bloomberg and former Gov. George Pataki announced their deal for the Yankees to build a new stadium in the Bronx back in 2005, the mayor guaranteed the city would receive at least $3.2 million in annual rent, plus payments in lieu of taxes from the parking facilities.

That revenue was to be the only direct income the city would receive from the entire new stadium project.

The money was meant to help repay the direct public subsidy to the garages - $32 million from the city, plus the state's $70 million. The city's expenditure is earmarked for new parks that will sit on top of two of the garages.

Even then, the promised revenue was substantially less than the $3.9 million the city is receiving as its share of current Yankees garage revenue.

Now that the bonds have been issued, we learn that the new garages will not generate enough money to provide full rent and taxes to the city until at least 2014.

Page 2 of 2)

That's according to the financial projections in a consultant study. The city included those projections in the bond documents but had not previously released them, despite several requests for a copy from the economic watchdog group Good Jobs New York.

"There may be periods during which excess cash flow could be insufficient to pay the city the full amount owed," Economic Development Corp. spokeswoman Janel Patterson acknowledged. "The amounts owed will not be forgiven, but will accrue interest at a compound annual rate ... until paid in full."

The balance sheet for the garages can't possibly be helped by the loss of more than 700 game-day spaces to the Yankees and the NYPD.

The bond offering says, "Parking Garage Site B will be funded exclusively from the State" [and] will have 600 spaces "reserved for use by the New York Yankees, its employees, guests, customers and other invitees and will not generate revenues."

That is double the number of free parking spaces Bloomberg announced for the team back in 2005. In addition, the garage operator must offer the team up to 900 additional parking spaces annually at an unspecified discount rate.

"The Yankees have no involvement with the garages," team spokeswoman Alice McGillion said yesterday.

Sure. And Manhattan has no involvement with the Brooklyn Bridge.

Any way you slice it, the Yankees and their luxury box VIPs will enjoy free, year-round valet service at what will essentially be the team's publicly financed private garage.

At an average $40-per-game valet parking rate, team executives can expect to save some $80 million from that sweet deal over the nearly 40-year life of the bonds.

Since Garage B is slated to be the only parking facility physically attached to the stadium, Yankees players will enjoy an added bonus.

They will no longer have to face adoring young fans waiting in the parking lot after the game in hopes of landing an autograph from their favorite hero.

Nothing but the best for the Bronx Bombers - and you pick up the tab.

jgonzalez@nydailynews.com

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Re: Rebuilding Falcons piece by piece

Post  RedMagma on Wed Jan 02, 2008 2:45 am

That new Yankee Stadium parking spot will cost double soon


http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/2008/01/02/2008-01-02_that_new_yankee_stadium_parking_spot_wil.html

Wednesday, January 2nd 2008, 4:00 AM

Yankee fans can expect to pay a whopping $29 for stadium parking during home games starting in 2010 - more than twice last year's $14 rate.

Those who want valet service will pay $40 - a sharp increase over today's $30 rate.

The projected hikes were revealed in the fine print of a $237 million Wall Street bond offering that the city Industrial Development Agency issued two weeks ago to finance the creation and refurbishing of nearly 9,000 parking spaces for the new stadium.

The basic game-day parking rates will jump to $17 this year, then to $19 next year, when the new $1 billion Yankee Stadium is slated to open.

The rates would then zoom to $29 in 2010 and would increase to $35 by 2014, according to a parking feasibility study that accompanies the bond documents.

"The rates ... are projections made by an independent consultant," said Janel Patterson, spokeswoman for the city Economic Development Corp. "They, therefore, do not necessarily reflect what the actual rates for the facilities will be."

The city's inclusion of the report in its official financing statement is meant to assure bond buyers that garage revenues will be sufficient for Bronx Parking Development LLC, the little-known group the city chose as developer, to pay off the bonds.

The main reason for the high rates is the astounding $340 million price tag for the project - three new garages, the refurbishing of half a dozen outdoor lots and the replacement of park land displaced by the new stadium.

The cost is $60 million higher than the city announced just eight months ago, when the IDA gave it preliminary approval.

In addition to the bonds, the garage project is receiving $70 million in direct subsidies from the state and $32.5 million from the city to pay for replacement parkland that will be situated over two of the garages.

Financial projections in the feasibility study show that even with the huge public subsidy and the higher game-day parking rates, revenues will be insufficient to permit the developer to pay full rent and taxes to the city until at least 2016.

So while the fans pay double for parking, taxpayers will receive virtually nothing for almost a decade from garages that public money helped build.

Meanwhile, the Yankees will be raking in huge amounts of cash from their spanking-new stadium next-door.

jgonzalez@nydailynews.com

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Builders for lots, garages at new Yankee Stadium defaulted o

Post  RedMagma on Wed Jan 02, 2008 2:47 am

Builders for lots, garages at new Yankee Stadium defaulted on prior bonds


http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/2008/01/02/2008-01-02_builders_for_lots_garages_at_new_yankee_.html?ref=rss


Wednesday, January 2nd 2008, 4:00 AM

The group that received $237 million in city-sponsored bonds to build garages and parking lots at the new Yankee Stadium is hardly an all-star of public financing.

Bronx Parking Development LLC lists as its "sole member" the nonprofit group Community Initiatives Development Corp., which defaulted on two previous tax-exempt bonds in the past 10 years, records show.

The first default - on $7.7million in tax-exempt bonds issued in 2002 by the Syracuse Industrial Development Agency to finance a senior citizens home - was revealed by the Daily News in October.

The second default was not widely known. It involved $5.6 million in bonds the Monroe County Industrial Development Agency issued in 1998 for CIDC to build and own a parking lot. "Such bond financing was structured similarly to the structure of the bond financing described herein," notes the bond document for the Yankees' garages.

CIDC, the document states, "subsequently defaulted on payments on the bonds and also on payment in lieu of tax payments in connection [with the garage]" and "voluntarily transferred" its interest in the Monroe garage to the bondholders on Jan. 1, 2007.

CIDC operates out of the upstate Hudson home of its president, William Loewenstein. The group reported deficits of $260,000 in 2005 and $517,000 in 2004 on revenues of about $2 million annually, tax filings show.

Loewenstein defended the city's choice of his group for the Yankees' project. "The city has retained professionals to run the project," he said.

Although his company is the sole private member of the Bronx Parking Development LLC, he noted, CIDC will have only two votes on the five-member management group. City Hall will control two votes, and the Bronx borough president will control the fifth.

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Re: Rebuilding Falcons piece by piece

Post  RedMagma on Wed Jan 02, 2008 2:49 am

Pedro Martinez proud he's stayed clean


http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/mets/2007/12/29/2007-12-29_pedro_martinez_proud_hes_stayed_clean-2.html

BY CHRISTIAN RED
DAILY NEWS SPORTS WRITER

Saturday, December 29th 2007, 4:00 AM
Pedro Martinez in action for the Mets in September. Antonelli/News

Pedro Martinez in action for the Mets in September.

Unlike his contemporary Roger Clemens - who is in the midst of damage control after being identified as a steroid user in the Mitchell Report - Mets ace Pedro Martinez says he is most proud of having remained "clean" during baseball's steroid era.

"When a report reveals that close to 100 players were using steroids, I thank God that I've always pitched clean," Martinez said in an interview in Spanish with the Dominican newspaper Listin Diario. Martinez was in Santo Domingo Thursday to receive a plaque recognizing his baseball accomplishments, part of an awards ceremony for the Dominican winter baseball season.

"Even when I felt pain in my arm, I got on the mound and pitched in that condition. I was a dominant pitcher in the steroids era," said Martinez. "That was a difficult period for pitchers and it makes me happy that all I have done in baseball has been clean. No one can question me."

The 36-year-old righthander acknowledged that his ERA is higher now and that his statistics are not what they once were when he was winning Cy Young Awards with the Expos in 1997 and the Red Sox in 1999 and 2000, but that his entire Hall of Fame career is on the level.

"I continued my work without trying any of these substances that are available," said Martinez, who has 209 career victories. "No one can question my place in the game."

Martinez, who returned from rotator cuff surgery on his pitching shoulder to make five starts in 2007, also said he had planned to try and pitch for the Licey Tigers team this winter in the Dominican, but that the Mets had advised him against doing so. With one season left on his four-year deal with the club and with GM Omar Minaya so far failing to sign a replacement for departed southpaw Tom Glavine, the Mets can ill afford to lose Martinez.

CANO CAN'T: Martinez isn't the only Dominican player who has been told to avoid winter ball. According to a Listin Diario report, Robinson Cano received a letter from the Yankees telling him to cease playing for the Estrellas Orientales. Cano was hitting .389 through nine regular-season games for Estrellas.

"I was surprised, because my main goal was to help Estrellas," Cano told the paper. "I'm sad, because I want to play and represent my hometown (San Pedro de Macoris) team."

An ESPNdeportes.com article said Cano told his Estrellas teammates that the Yankees did not want him to aggravate an old calf injury. Cano did not return a phone call from the Daily News. Earlier this month, Mets shortstop Jose Reyes told The News in an interview in Santiago, D.R., that Minaya had told him not to play for the Cibao Giants this winter

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Lowell gives pep talk

Post  RedMagma on Wed Jan 02, 2008 3:15 am

Lowell gives pep talk

http://www.bostonherald.com/sports/baseball/red_sox/view.bg?articleid=1064078

Red Sox third baseman Mike Lowell, MVP of last year’s World Series, was in Spokane, Wash., for New Year’s Eve and delivered a postgame locker room pep talk to the Gonzaga basketball team after it beat Utah, 61-59.cw2cw2

Lowell was a guest of Mike Redmond, his former Florida Marlins’ teammate, current Twins backup catcher and Gonzaga alum. According to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Lowell’s speech was greeted by cheers from the team

Hmm, Do you think maybe Lowell and Redmond are talking about Santana behind the scenes?

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Re: Rebuilding Falcons piece by piece

Post  RedMagma on Wed Jan 02, 2008 3:17 am

Boston last AL team to add black player.
Message #42640.1
Posted by williedixon on Jan-1 5:27 PM
A historical fact that every black person should know .
With MLK day coming up we want the world to know this very important fact.
Thank you
Willie

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Re: Rebuilding Falcons piece by piece

Post  RedMagma on Wed Jan 02, 2008 3:19 am

Rasicm is funny.......especially when it is a white man trying to play the race card by referencing something that happened decades ago.




The more embarrassing aspect is that Sox ownership continued their racist policies right up through 02. This ownership has made progress, but the Sox name still has along way to go until they shake the racist perception. Henry, Theo and Larry all speak openly about their commitment to cooperating with the effort to remove the Yawkey name from the street outside the park. But there are proper channels to go through to do that so it will take a while. That will be a big step in right direction once they remove all traces of Yawkey affiliation with the organization.



Enough with the race-baiting.

For the record, it was 48 years ago that Pumpsie Green came up from Minneapolis. During the Eisenhower administration.

They've had a black player or two since then. Their highest paid player at least the past 10 years has been a black player, and they've had a black player one of the cornerstones of the franchise for the past 30 years anyway (Rice, Vaughn, Martinez, Ramirez, Ortiz).

Those are some facts that every black person could know

Martinez - RHP, Ortiz - DH, Ramirez - LF


Great insight

Willie

Live in the present not the past.

Boston has a long history of racial intolerance starting after the civil war when black citizens came north and took jobs from mostly irish immigrants. The irish rebelled, not out of racial hatred, but in response to the menial jobs previously held by the irish being taken away. Integration of Boston schools was a disaster, and fueled racial hatred in the 60s.

In sports, the Yawkey regime clearly had racial issues with their teams over the years when athletes like Reggie Smith and others struggled with the citiies intolerances. White players got a pass, and blacks took heavy heat from the Boston Media and fans. Many black players did not want to play in Boston. I started watching the Redsox in the 1960's, and civil rights was a huge issue of the day. The Red Sox from 1958 thru the impossible dream team of 1967 were bad teams, mostly devoid of Black players. There were some, (Scott, Smith, Foy), but no black face that was accepted by the media and fans as "ours". The 1975 WS team was a mostly white team and played together for several years. Jim Rice was one of the best hitters of that generation. Boston media hounded him, even though he was certainly unfriendly and seemingly angry all the time, and the fans were lukewarm at best. The 1986 team had Baylor and a few others but mostly white teams. Now the tide has turned in professional sports, with international players in all of the sports. The current Red Sox regime is to be applauded, and an example for sports teams. How about the NY Mets (latinos) aversion to white players? Who cares. The black players, including Latiino's are now accepted and embraced by Boston fans.

We know the celtics started the first all black five, first head coach etc. The celtics of the 60's changed many New Englander's views of black athletes, when we were blessed with Sam Jones, KC Jones, Satch Sanders and of course, Bill Russell. They were great players, and KC/Russell/Sanders became black head coaches. Sam Jones coached college. They were accepted. Its interesting that the 1986 team became a racial divide across the country, when battling the mostly black 76er's and the Lakers. The celtics were perceived as white boys and not exactly applauded by the black community. Because it was a "black sport" the racism was reversed.

Lets get it right, credit where it is due. We have come a long way.

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