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CS Council Approves CVB/A&M Funding Agreement For Kyle Field Redevelopment

The College Station City Council has approved a joint agreement with A&M and the Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB), giving $14 million dollars in hotel tax money to help fund the redevelopment of Kyle Field.

In exchange, the university will rent facilities at reduced rates to the CVB.

James Benham, who was part of the 6-1 majority vote, called it a game-changer that will be a model for other university towns.

CScoun071113kyleJB.mp3Comments from James Benham.

Jess Fields voted no, saying the access to university facilities at reduced rates…including Reed Arena and new meeting space at Kyle…isn’t enough return for the city’s contribution.

Karl Mooney, who was among those disagreeing with Fields, says this lays the groundwork for tourism business year-round.

CScoun071113kyleKM.mp3Comments from Karl Mooney.

The chief counsel for the A&M System, Ray Bonilla, says the agreement continues the momentum the flagship university has been enjoying.

CScoun071113kyleRB-2.mp3Comments from Ray Bonilla.

Bonilla was asked if problems arose during the 30-year agreement. He said in addition to a dispute resolution process that’s in the contract, A&M is aware of the political implications in Austin.

CScoun071113kyleRB-1.mp3More from Ray Bonilla.

Another $22 million from a recently approved increase in the countywide hotel tax will also go to the $450 million dollar expansion.

Following the council’s action, A&M System Chancellor John Sharp released the following statement: “This agreement is evidence of the many selfless servants in this community and their desire to create a world-class environment here in Aggieland. It will benefit this community in redeveloping Kyle Field, but also assist the Convention & Visitors Bureau in creating substantial economic development on a 365 day a year basis. This is a proud day for Bryan/College Station and their partnership with Texas A&M.”

Background information and slide show courtesy of the City of College Station:

By a 6-1 vote, the council approved a pair of agreements affecting the Kyle Field redevelopment project. Councilmember Jess Fields voted against the motion, The funding agreement with the Convention and Visitors Bureau secures the city’s reserve, unallocated hotel tax funds for access to Texas A&M facilities that will attract large-scale events to town. The assignment and assumption agreement with A&M and the CVB ensures A&M will receive the same funds for the entire 30-year-term if the CVB ceases to be part of the relationship.

Public funds for this project will come entirely from Hotel Occupancy Tax, which is collected from visitors to the community. A 0.75 percent countywide Hotel Occupancy Tax was approved last month by the state legislature and signed by the governor. This source is estimated to generate at least $22 million over the next 30 years. A portion of the current City of College Station Hotel Occupancy Tax also will be used through a facilities access agreement for access to certain A&M facilities at preferred rates. This source is estimated to generate $14 million over the next 30 years.

Between the county hotel tax and the College Station hotel tax, a minimum of $36 million will be provided to A&M over a 30-year period. According to A&M, the budget for the Kyle Field renovation project is $450 million, of which $18,150,000 will be financed through the preferred facilities access and associated agreements. The estimated annual debt service is $1,199,625.

Preferred Access Agreement from City of College Station
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Posted by on Jul 11 2013. Filed under Featured Stories, News.
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