ATLANTA -- Taxpayers can expect to pay 1/3 of the cost of the proposed, newFalcons stadium -- not 100 percent of the cost, as was the case with the Georgia Dome -- but taxpayers will hold 100 percent ownership of the new stadium, according to Frank Poe, Executive Directorof the Georgia World Congress Center.
"The public sector willown 100 percent of the new stadium for30 cents on the dollar," Poe said.
Poe spoke at apublic forumhosted by Common Cause Georgiaat Sale Hall Auditorium on the campus of Morehouse College on Monday night.
Onepurpose of the forum was for Poe to explainthe need for a public-private partnership to build the new stadium. While the public would kick in one-third of the costs -- more than $300 million --the remaining two-thirds would come from the Falcons, the NFL and other private-sector sources.
Poe said that based on the revenues generated by the 20-year-old Georgia Dome -- revenues fromboth Falcons events and non-Falcons events -- taxpayers could expect to receive from the new stadium a huge return on their one-third investment, totalling hundreds of millions of dollars in revenues annually, including additional tax revenues.
"It is important for both Atlanta and Georgia taxpayers to engage in the process and make sure their voices are heard," said Common Cause Georgia Boardmember Wyc Orr. "Our goal is to host an event that will give the public an update on negotiations between the Georgia World Congress Center, a public authority, and the Atlanta Falcons, a private entity, but certainly one that highly values and needs the public trust. This is an opportunity for all members of the public to have direct, person-to-person communications with those who are conducting these negotiations which will have such a direct impact on the public treasury."
Poe said theGeorgia World Congress Center and the Falcons are expected to sign off on their business deal for the new stadium by December 31st., a deal that will specify the details, such aswho will pay for what, whowill be liable for what,and how the revenues will be shared and for how long.
After that, the design would be chosen, along with the location (it would be located either directly north of the World Congress Center/Georgia Dome complex, or directly south of it), and the architect;and construction plans would thenproceed with input from the City of Atlanta and the Fulton County Commission and the public every step of the way, Poe said.
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