Friday, December 18, 2009

Newark Mayor Booker: deal to move Nets to Newark isn't dead

Yesterday, I wrote that, while the deal to move the New Jersey Nets temporarily to Newark seemed to have fallen apart, these deals are negotiable.

Indeed, in an interview last night on WBGO's Newark Today with Cory Booker, the mayor said the deal is not dead and "the conversation is still going on... We still have a chance of creating settlement between the Izod Center and the Prudential Center to create greater revenue."

He suggested that the plan is getting snagged by the transition between the outgoing Gov. Jon Corzine and the incoming Gov. Chris Christie.

"When [Christie] sits down and looks at the facts, I think he's going to find a way to make a win-win happen," Booker said.

Caveats

Host Andrew Meyer brought up a few caveats, including the proposed $3 surcharge on tickets at both venues.

Booker responded incompletely, saying that operators of the Prudential Center already have the right to add a surcharge in Newark, thanks to state legislation.

As for the $7.5 million penalty imposed on the Nets for leaving the Meadowlands for another location other than Brooklyn or Queens, Booker said--in what was news to me--that there's a "straight-up ban" on moving to Newark and "we have to figure out a way to lift the ban."

Stay tuned.

Also New Jersey Newsroom reported that Booker said he was "very confident" it would all work out.

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