NFL: Will the Bills leave Buffalo?
The Buffalo Bills are staying in New York and they’re about to get a new home. Team owners have signed an agreement for a $1.4 billion stadium.
The Buffalo Bills are not leaving New York. State officials have reached a 30-year agreement with team owners Terry and Kim Pegula for a new open-air arena for the Bills worth $1.4 billion that is scheduled for completion in 2026.
“We took another step today to solidify our collective goal of constructing a new stadium for the Buffalo Bills in Orchard Park. We are grateful for the time, efforts, and unwavering commitment made by Governor Hochul and her team throughout the process,” according to a statement released by the Bills owners.
Taxpayers to pay for stadium
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul announced that the new venue would create 10,000 jobs. In a statement, she said she wanted to ensure that the Bills would remain in Buffalo, and that taxpayers would get a good deal.
The new stadium will be owned by New York State and will make use of $850 million in taxpayers’ money- $600 million from New York, and $250 million from Erie County. The Erie County Stadium Corporation would lease the arena to the team.
Other NFL stories:
Both the New York State Legislature and the Erie County Legislature still need to approve the public funding. Gov. Hochul had come under fire for spending taxpayer money on a football stadium.
The NFL will loan $200 million for construction expenses, while the remaining $350 million will be shouldered by the team owners.
Negotiating to stay in New York
The new agreement comes after months of negotiations among Gov. Hochul, Erie county officials, and the team owners. The Bills wanted to stay in the area, but did not want to renew the lease of the team’s current home.
HIghmark Stadium is almost 50 years old, and is the fourth-oldest among NFL stadiums in the US. The old venue is likely to be torn down to make way for parking space.