If You Build It, They Will Come: A Discussion on Stadium Construction

Today’s 4 p.m. panel “If You Build It, They Will Come: A Discussion on Stadium Construction,” was kicked off by Katherine Baynes, a partner at DLA Piper LLP.  Ms. Baynes discussed the financings for the new Yankee Stadium and Citi Field. She stressed that although the Yankees and Mets did initially receive some municipal assistance, the construction of the stadiums were ultimately financed by the teams. Despite what many politicians and New Yorkers may claim, the Mets and Yankees are in fact repaying PILOT bonds issued for construction of the stadium. The Mets and Yankees sold tax-exempt backed by payments in lieu of property taxes, lease revenue and installment payments to finance the construction of Citi Field and Yankee Stadium.

She explained that PILOT payments cannot be greater than actual taxes and due to new regulations, can no longer be issued at a fixed rate payment. Baynes discussed how the Treasury Department recently issued more restrictive final regulations for bonds back by payments in lieu of taxes. However, the rules contain a transition provision that appear to enable the Yankees and Mets to continue to issue PILOT bonds as planned without having to comply with the new rules.

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Today’s Events – Baseball And The Law: America’s National Pastimes

Click here to watch a live webcast of the event, starting at 10:30 a.m.

The Albany Government Law Review will host its Spring 2011 symposium TODAY, Monday, April 11, 2011 from 10:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.  This all-day event will include several panels discussing a variety of topics, including enhancing drug use, labor negotiations and collective bargaining, stadium development, intellectual property rights in the age of new media, player representation and contract negotiation and the history and development of free agency.

Participants to date include:

  • John Thorn, Official Baseball Historian, Major League Baseball
  • Henry D. Fetter, Author, Taking on the Yankees: Winning and Losing in the Business of Baseball
  • Joseph Gunn, New York City Corporation Counsel
  • Eric Bowman ’90, Founder and Senior Partner, Bowman Law Firm
  • Martin Schwimmer, Partner, Leason Ellis LLP
  • Moshe Bonder ’03, Regional General Counsel – Americas, CG Power Solutions USA, Inc.
  • Katherine Baynes, Partner, DLA Piper LLP
  • Michael Klein, Town Attorney, Town of Ramapo
  • David Fernandez ’92, Partner, Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP
  • JR Rickert, President and CEO, National Sports Management
  • David L. Snyder, Professor, Department of Sports Management, State University of New York College at Cortland
  • Rick Murphy, Vice President, General Manager, Partner, Tri-City Valley Cats
  • Douglas Gladstone, Author, A Bitter Cup of Coffee: How the MLB and The Players Association Threw 874 Retirees a Curve
  • Hank Domin, Sports Editor, Albany Times Union
  • Professor Paul Finkelman, President William McKinley Distinguished Professor of Law and Public Policy, Albany Law School

For details about time and room location, click here. The symposium is free and open to the public.

For additional information, contact Ian Group at 518-472-5863.

 

GLR Meets MLB: Albany Government Law Review’s spring symposium, Baseball and the Law: America’s National Pastimes

Written by Brady Begeal, Topics Chair, Albany Government Law Review Member

The Albany Government Law Review’s spring symposium entitled “Baseball and the Law: America’s National Pastimes” kicked off with a provocative lecture by Professor Paul Finkelman on steroids in baseball.  His presentation, “A Contrarian View of Steroids: What’s Wrong with Being All You Can Be?” challenged many mainstream opinions and viewpoints of modern baseball players who use steroids.

Professor Finkelman began by giving the audience his thoughts on the Barry Bonds perjury trial.  He explained that the government’s prosecution of Bonds is a selective prosecution, used to make a public example of Bonds.  Finkelman went on to argue that the use of steroids in baseball is not a new phenomenon, and that players have been using drugs and performance enhancers since baseball began.  Many of the most beloved Hall-of-Famers were known to abuse illegal substances, including steroids.  Finkelman presented little-known substance abuse facts about players like Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle, Ty Cobb, Keith Hernandez, Pud Galvin, and Babe Ruth.

The lecture continued with Professor Finkelman asking the audience, “Is using steroids really ‘cheating?’”  Finkelman referenced the Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa time period as the “wild, wild west” where steroids weren’t even a violation in baseball.  He also explained that amphetamines called “greenies” were readily used and accepted in baseball as a way for players to play 160 games and not burn-out.  So, is it really fair to condemn McGwire, Sosa, and others, and to exclude them from the hall of fame?

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