So, there are multiple reports that the Falcons are willing to accept only $200 Million in bonds (down from $300M) backed by Atlanta’s hotel motel tax to get this deal done and moving. So, the taxpayers have saved $100 Million from the previous deal, right? Well, as Maria Saporta reports, not so fast…
Now here is where it gets interesting. Under the GWCCA-Falcons agreement, if the hotel-motel tax generated more than the estimated $300 million, the excess taxes would go into a “waterfall” fund that would go to pay for other debt on the project, or go into a refurbishment and maintenance reserve account, or go into a fund for capital improvements.
So whether the state provides $200 million or $300 million in bonding capacity, the amount of hotel-motel taxes collected remains the same. In other words, it does not mean that the Atlanta Falcons would be putting in another $100 million into the stadium project. All surplus hotel-motel taxes would still be invested in the stadium development.
Continue to watch this deal folks. Regardless of what PR reports and various headlines say, the contribution from taxpayers appears to continue to be well over the $200M or even the $300M that most are being fed and reporting.