MLS stadium and Scottrade renovation bills pass Ways and Means committee, Friday vote next

ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – The Board of Alderman’s Ways and Means committee voted to approve financial plans to improve the Scottrade Center and possibly create a new MLS stadium during a meeting Wednesday.

First on the agenda was a measure for the city to pay $100-million-dollars for improvements to the Scottrade Center.

On Monday, this proposal failed.

Then on Wednesday the proposal was re-presented with an amendment in which committee member said the payments put less stress on the city's budget.

Based on those changes the committee voted to approve a financial plan to improve Scottrade.

Second up was the proposal to fund a new MLS stadium which would cost roughly $200-million-dollars.

In a 4 to 3 vote the committee approved a financial plan in which the city would pay $60-million-dollars and the rest would come from private investors.

The plan also states that the ownership group would be responsible for all of the maintenance and operations of the stadium, and will make a 30-year commitment.

Jim Kavanaugh, vice chairman of SC STL, said based on their findings as part of this financial plan the city will make money on the stadium.

"We believe that based on the taxes that we will generate and the income for the city that we will generate approximately $78-million-dollars based on the plan we have put together, so you look at that compared to what the city was going to pay out which is $60-million so it is not only something they will get their money back they will actually get a return on their investment, " said Kavanaugh.

There were people at the meeting who still believe the cities money would be better spent elsewhere.

The MLS ownership group said their next two major hurdles are getting the final board approval and then getting voters on board.