Sunday, May 13, 2012

ZAP! #88: Spinning Votes

ZAP! #88
New Financing Plan Would Reduce Irving’s Screwing Contribution 
to Entertainment Center*
     Call us cynical, but when Las Colinas Group -- through their PR hack (Margulies) -- issues a press release the day before a major city election and states that they will ‘up their share’ of the Entertainment Center funding to $125 million (from $80 million), staff of the CCR just has to say: REALLY?
     They were even bold enough to declare in their release that they “listened to those in the community” regarding the current lopsided agreement that has the city being the major partner in a private enterprise venture with most of the risk and less of the return.  For those paying attention, this is not the way most business deals would be structured! 
     Not only is this financial mea culpa a little too late, but it seems as if LCG is attempting to perform contract negotiations via the media and not the bargaining table.
     Cleverly worded in their press release was a couple additional stipulations: LCG needs six additional months to pull the deal off and obtain their $125 million share (recognizing that they have continuously failed to meet the deadline to demonstrate proof of having their original share -- first $50 million, then $80 million -- available); and the city should remove the “parking tax’ bond provision in the original contract.
     Doesn’t it seem humorous that the LCG wants to now use the media in an attempt to potentially influence voter’s decisions and amend a contractual agreement?  Why wasn’t there any mention in their press release of other significant Entertainment Center contractual flaws needing adjustment: 100-year lease provision; only $1 million revenue to the city for 50-years; compliance with the city’s current 60/40 RAB zoning ordinance; no double pledging of HOT taxes; property owners not on the hook for ANY funding shortfalls; and investment grade bonds would be issued with the city’s AAA bond rating remaining intact?
     Perhaps, after the election, a reconstituted city council will demonstrate what has been lacking with this $250 million Entertainment Center venture...putting the city’s interest over the developer’s Kool-Aid influenced spin.
…………………….Mark Holbrook
  • Apparently, our version of the LCGs press release headline has been altered.