Missouri lawmakers sued Gov. Jay Nixon and the Regional Convention and Sports Complex Authority over Nixon’s ability to provide funding for a new riverfront football stadium in St. Louis, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Six state legislators allege in the lawsuit that taxpayer money is “being spent illegally” on “an illegal construction of a new NFL stadium.”
Nixon and his task force say they can extend bonds on the Edward Jones Dome on the city and state level, which would give almost $250 million in public funds for the new facility.
The new stadium is expected to cost $985 million.
Just last month, the owners of the Edward Jones Dome sued the city of St. Louis, seeking to avoid a public vote.
Nixon announced in February an agreement with the Terminal Railroad Association and Ameren Missouri to move a railroad line and relocate power lines to clear room for the proposed 90-acre site for a stadium..
He wanted $450 million from the NFL and Rams ownership, plus up to $350 million from an extension of the existing bonds with funds from tax credits and seat licenses. Nixon then said the citizens of St. Louis County would not be asked to pay for the riverfront stadium.
The Rams plan on moving to a year-to-year lease with the city of St. Louis because they haven’t reached a deal to help fund renovations for Edward Jones Dome. The 66,000-seat stadium is only 20 years old but is considered outdated, as 22 of the 32 teams currently play in stadiums that were built after 1995.
Rams owner Stan Kroenke is moving forward with plans for a team in Los Angeles, after he bought 60 acres of land adjacent to the Forum and Hollywood Park in Inglewood last year and teamed up with Stockbridge Capital Group on plans to build a $1.86-billion, 80,000-seat NFL stadium.
- Scooby Axson