Local Government and Pacers and Capital Improvement Board and Government & Economic Development and Government and Sports Business

UPDATE: City reaches $160M deal with Pacers

April 10, 2014
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The city's Capital Improvement Board will spend $160 million over 10 years on subsidy payments and stadium improvements for the Indiana Pacers in exchange for a lease extension through the 2023-2024 season.

The pact, which includes up to three one-year-extensions, calls for the Pacers to create a separate entity to operate Bankers Life Fieldhouse. The CIB would subsidize the new entity to the tune of at least $10.8 million per year.

That breaks down to $3.7 million for direct operating expenses and $7.1 million for "operating reimbursement" payments, according to a CIB board presentation obtained by IBJ. The $7.1 million figure would rise by 3 percent each year over the course of the deal.

The CIB also would provide $26.5 million for improvements to Bankers Life Fieldhouse's locker rooms, concession stands and video boards, and another $7 million for capital replacement items including new carpet. About half of those improvements would be completed in 2014.

The agreement also sets up a process for the CIB to provide financing assistance to the heirs of team owner Herb Simon, 79, should they have trouble securing financing upon Simon's death. The CIB board presentation says "we understand that Mr. Simon's heirs will take control of the team per his will and trust agreements," but it provides no details.

The CIB would have 15 months to help the team find financing and would be entitled to a right of first offer in the event of a sale.

The CIB has been providing large annual subsidies to the Pacers since 2010, when it agreed to provide $33.5 million over three seasons to offset losses from operating the fieldhouse. Last year, CIB agreed to provide another $11 million under a one-year extension.

The board presentation reviewed by IBJ says that, unlike prior agreements, the new pact does not allow the Pacers to use financial losses as a justifcation for relocating the team.

Pacers and CIB officials have scheduled a press conference for 10:30 a.m. Monday to discuss the deal. It is expected to be approved at the CIB's board meeting that afternoon.

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