OAKLAND (CBS SF) – The Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority on Friday voted unanimously on a lease deal with the Raiders for the 2019 NFL season.
According to officials, the deal would raise the team’s rent about $4 million to $7.5 million for 2019, in what is widely expected to be the team’s last season in Oakland before moving to Las Vegas.
“You know, I’ve always learned if you do what’s best for the fans, you’re going to always win. And this deal was about doing what’s best for the fans and the taxpayers,” said Oakland-Alameda Coliseum Executive Director Scott McKibben. “We wanted to do a deal that was good for the taxpayers.”
The deal has an option for a second year, at $10.5 million, in case the new stadium in Las Vegas isn’t ready yet.
“It’s a good agreement because it provides opportunities for people to continue to receive employment with the Raiders playing here at the Coliseum,” said Nate Miley, Alameda County Supervisor and Chair of Joint Powers Authority. “It brings a lot of positive goodwill and attention to the city of Oakland.”
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The Coliseum board is still in negotiations on the naming rights for the stadium. If all goes well, a proposal will be presented to the Joint Powers Authority board next month.
While the Coliseum Authority have signed off on the deal, approval from the Oakland City Council and the Alameda County Board of Supervisors is still needed.
While there is no official date when the council or the board of supervisors would make a decision on the lease, Miley said he expects both boards to vote next week.
Coliseum Authority Commissioner and Oakland City Councilman Larry Reid said with the support of two council members already, he is hopeful they will also approve the deal.
Miley said he hopes the extension “may provide a sense of healing” between the Raiders and the community.
The agreement has no impact on the current lawsuit the city of Oakland is pursuing against the Raiders and the NFL over the move to Las Vegas.
Friday’s approval comes one month after the team resumed negotiations with Coliseum officials, after breaking off talks when the City of Oakland filed suit on the impending Las Vegas move.
Many fans feared that the Raiders’ game against Denver last Dec. 24 would be the team’s final game in Oakland. The team explored the possibility of playing this fall at other venues in the Bay Area, including Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara and Oracle Park in San Francisco.
However, when nothing materialized, the Raiders resumed negotiating with the Coliseum Authority.
“When [Raiders owner] Mark Davis took the deal off the table I told him to look at other options if he wanted but to remember us,” McKibben said. “They did their window shopping but they realized they had a good deal here,” even if the new lease is less favorable to the Raiders than previous leases.
He said the authority had more leverage in the current lease negotiations than in previous negotiations “because the Raiders needed a place to play” and the deadline imposed by the National Football League is March 24.
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