OAKLAND (KCBS) – A proposed 10-year lease extension for the Oakland Athletics is expected to be rejected on Thursday at a meeting of the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Joint Powers Authority.
On Tuesday, the Oakland City Council met in closed session. They have ordered the four city council members that are also on the Coliseum Authority board to reject the proposed lease extension and instead, present their own lease proposal.
Andy Dolich, a sport business consultant and Director of Career Development at USF’s Collegiate Sports Business MBA Program, said this is just the latest twist to the saga of sports franchises in Oakland.
“If you’re a follower of the A’s and the Raiders in this situation, you’re absolutely scratching your head and you’re frustrated. We’ve seen the commissioner of baseball congratulate everybody last week that the deal was done,” Dolich said. “Then we had the city council members not showing up. We’ve had various cancellations of JPA meetings. We can send a manned spaceship to Mars and return it, but we can’t figure out how to keep the two remaining teams in Oakland, and that is frustrating.”
The new proposal from Oakland officials address some of the concerns of the city council, including reduced rent payments for the team.
Dolich, who spent 15 years of his career with the A’s from 1980-1995, said officials from all sides have to take the politics out of negotiations and work together to come up with a viable solution.
“There’s an opportunity to build a new stadium on the Coliseum footprint and retrofit the existing O.co Coliseum for single-use of the Raiders. Mark Davis has been the most outspoken in wanting to remain,” Dolich said. “You could retrofit that stadium to be a top quality NFL stadium, build a new ballpark for the A’s, and everybody could get on with their life. You have to take the concept of politics out of this and I think get to the essential nature of why people love sports, which is teamwork.”
The A’s current lease expires after the 2015 season.