Reno Aces Ballpark Settles Tax Dispute

     RENO, Nev. (CNS) – Washoe County Commissioners unanimously approved a settlement last week that will result in the developers of the Reno Aces Ballpark paying $1.9 million in back taxes over the next four years.
     As part of the deal ratified April 28, after months of negotiations, the county will waive about $803,000 n penalties and other costs.
     The stadium was built through a public-private partnership, with Aces owner Herb Simon financing the construction of the $80 million stadium and shouldering the bulk of the maintenance costs of the facility.
     He reportedly did so anticipating the receipt of $20 million in seed money from the state from proceeds of its car rental tax, and a tax increment from the City of Reno. However promises evaporated after the onset of the global economic crisis in 2008, as every municipality involved in the deal struggled to cope with a dramatic decline in real estate tax revenue.
     Nevada Land LLC, the entity Simon established to act as owner of the stadium and the land it sits on has not paid property taxes since 2009. With penalties and costs. Prior to effecting the settlement, Nevada Land LLC owed more than $2.9 million.
     “If we had litigated, we would’ve won,” said Washoe County Chair Marsha Berkbigler in an interview with Courthouse News this week. “But it would’ve just gone as a lien on the property.”
     The county hopes to use the proceeds and the stadium authority to bring more events like concerts and conferences to the stadium. “This deal is really good for the constituents,” Berkbigler said.
     Aces Stadium president Eric Edelstein also expressed satisfaction with the settlement.
     “There was a marriage between the team, the city and the county and we had forgotten why we fell in love,” he said. “I’m excited to move past this and make Northern Nevada a better place.”

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