First, they persuaded Nevada legislators to commit the largest public subsidy in American history toward their new $1.9 billion stadium and practice facility.
Now the Raiders persuaded the Henderson City Council to shave $6.05 million off the $12.1-million market value of 55 acres of land to build their practice field and corporate headquarters near the city’s executive airport.
In both cases, the team’s winning argument in favor of corporate subsidy reads the same: The return you reap will be worth the dollars you sow.
Henderson’s council voted unanimously on Tuesday night to move forward toward a directed sale of land to the Raiders, a decision that allows city officials to use a Nevada law allowing no-bid sales at under-market prices when they deem it in the public interest.
The Raiders plan to spend as much as $75 million to construct their headquarters. The team’s oft-cited budget includes $1.8 billion for its 65,000-seat domed stadium, and $100 million for its corporate headquarters. Nevada’s $750 million taxpayer investment evolved from those estimates.
If the sale receives final council approval in February, the Raiders will pay roughly $110,000 per acre for the land. The team in May paid $77.5 million for 62 acres — $1.25 million per acre — to private owners for its stadium site, though that parcel sits in a much more desirable location adjacent to the Strip. The initial asking price for that land was $100 million.
Asked if the city initially offered the discounted rate or if the Raiders requested the half-price deal, city councilperson John Marz said, “It was a negotiation. Of course they asked, just like everybody else asked.”
The team plans to create 250 nonplaying jobs stationed at the headquarters, though many of those positions could be filled by employees relocating from the current Raiders home in Alameda. Raiders stadium consultant Don Webb said the facility will need to be completed by spring 2020 to accommodate team staff preparing for the upcoming NFL season later that year.