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Oakland won't fund a new $400M stadium for the Raiders, because they still owe $80M from the old one

Will they escape into LA instead?

O.co Coliseum during the Buffalo Bills trip to Oakland in December.
O.co Coliseum during the Buffalo Bills trip to Oakland in December.

AS THE OAKLAND Raiders seemingly plot a move to Los Angeles with the San Diego Chargers, government officials in Oakland and Alameda County say they are not willing to spend millions in taxpayer money on a new stadium that would keep the team in town.

Oakland mayor Libby Schaaf said she wouldn’t support using public funds on a proposed $900 million stadium that currently faces a $400 million funding gap, according to Rachel Swan of the San Francisco Chronicle.

And why not?

Aside from the obvious, well-documented issues with spending public money on sports stadiums, the city and the county are still paying off the publicly funded stadium renovations that originally brought the team back to Oakland in 1995.

According to Swan, Oakland and Alameda County “still have to pay an outstanding balance of $80 million in bonds” related to the O.co Coliseum project where the Raiders currently play, and they’ll be paying it off until 2026.

“That money we’re paying now is general-fund money we could spend on police, parks or libraries,” Schaaf said.

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The Raiders are currently working on a stadium project in the Los Angeles area with the San Diego Chargers. Both franchises have faced local opposition to the use of public funds to build new stadiums for them.

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