In a perfect world, RaiderNation would unite behind a new stadium.However, with the thorny issue of relocation, some forget about the new building. While there are scores of Bay Area fans unhappy about the move, business must go on. Meanwhile, Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman prepares her city to welcomes the Raiders. With that said, moving an NFL franchise appears tough considering the fans left behind. Without delay, Mayor Goodman answered questions regarding criticisms and the Bay Area fanbase.
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Critics say the stadium negatively affects the money allocated for education? Any truth to this? If not, why do you believe some are critical?
A: To the contrary, but the history of this is interesting: before 1996 not one penny of tourist hotel room tax dollars was set aside for education. Over the years, the allocation grew. Now, in this past year, to an amount of 39 cents of every room tax dollar being allocated specifically to K–12 and post-secondary education. Critics do not care to get the facts and become knowledgeable, they are part of the population that is just negative and complains.
As for funding the stadium, we added a very modest increase to the room tax this year. Yet, the amount still keeps Las Vegas extremely competitive in the world tourism market. With the added excitement of being home to new NHL and NFL teams, additional and new visitors to our city will bring in additional dollars through room taxes on their stays in the hotels.
The Raiders are leaving a solid fan base in Oakland. Many fans are disconsolate. What can Las Vegas do to ease this tense time?
A: We welcome all Raiders fans to Las Vegas. In fact, we welcome those who choose to visit from Oakland and elsewhere to join our huge Raider fan base. Many already love calling Las Vegas home. There is a reason the fit is so good – Las Vegas is the city of excitement, energy, and fun. Las Vegas is 24/7 city sitting ready.
The league approved relocation, by a vote of 31-1, the NFL sent a strong message to your city. What role has the league played in the process?
A: Of course, it was the league’s decision. Plus, that vote showed the confidence that the owners have in the market place of Las Vegas. Owners like Jerry Jones and Robert Kraft understand the brand here and what Las Vegas brings to the table. Can you imagine a Super Bowl in Las Vegas? We can!
In essence, Mayor Goodman used facts to support her answers. All things considered, many would duck certain questions. Whether Bay Area fans accept these answers at face value remains a mystery. With sound planning, Las Vegas could be an NFL stronghold. In part two, Mayor Goodman discusses the process of bringing an established NFL franchise to Nevada.