Dan Onorato segment (part 2)
Savran: Is a Plan B viable? How far along is such a plan? What about the IOC clause that prevents the Penguins from seeking such a Plan B?
Onorato: I understand the IOC condition that they have in their contract with the Penguins. But that does not mean we cannot start preparing alternative plans. We want to have a plan in place, so that if the license does not go to IOC, then we are ready to go with another Plan in place for the Penguins.
I realize that the Penguins need to know within a certain time frame. I know that after their lease expires they can start talking to other cities. And I also realize that the Pen's were promised certain things 7 years ago. But realize I have only been in this office for 2 years. I don't really care what they were promised in the past. That doesn't help us now. Let's all sit down like adults and get this worked out.
Savran: Yes, but can you proceed with a Plan B if the Pen's are not at the table with you?
Onorato: There are two tracts we can take. Tract #1, make any of applicants fund a multi-purpose arena. We can have alternative plans in place, ready to kick in, when needed, in order to keep the Penguins in Pittsburgh.
Right now, and I cannot stress this enough, IT WOULD BE IRRESPONSIBLE to endorse any plan because of the lack of knowledge of all the details behind the plans. All we know is the general concepts that companies have put out through their PR.
Savran: You talk about getting the other applicants to add arena funding to their proposals, isn't it a bit too late for that?? The applications are already in.
Onorato: That is up to the gaming board. I talked to all 3 companies about arena funding. I spoke to Don Barden the other day about this. He said, 'I will look at some numbers and get back to you.' That is direction I want to move them in.
We are working on alternative plans, that we will likely have the details of by late March early April.
The alternative plan might consist of some gaming money, also tapping into the $90 million that the state has had earmarked for this region for some time. But as you know, there will be no city or county money available. You know the finances of this region.
As far as Plan B we have to determine if it is a legitimate form of funding? Does it make sense?
Savran: Well thanks Dan, I know that you have to go.
Onrato: I will come on anytime you ask me to Stan. I will not run from this issue.
I also want to clear up this, because I got a lot of emails on it, resulting from something I said in another interview. And that is the land issue. The SEA and the land donation, that will involve ANY proposal connected to a new arena.
Last edited by td_ice
on Thu Feb 16, 2006 10:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.