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CPS Board of Education Approves Land Agreement with FC Cincinnati

April 10, 2018

(Cincinnati) – Tonight the Cincinnati Public Schools Board of Education approved the terms of a land agreement with FC Cincinnati to build a new Stargel Stadium in land adjacent to Taft IT High School, as well as an agreement on the terms of property taxes FC Cincinnati will pay on their newly constructed stadium.

The proposal passed 6-0; Board Member Ryan Messer was absent.

According to the terms of the resolution, FC Cincinnati will agree to:

  • Build new Stargel Stadium in accordance with CPS policies;
  • Establish a partnership with CPS for expanded academic internship and employment opportunities;
  • Enter into a Community Benefits Agreement with the coalition of community organizations and residents prior to June 30, 2018.
  • Make a payment in lieu of taxes (PILOTs) in line with the District’s 1999 Tax Abatement Agreement with the City of Cincinnati.  FC Cincinnati proposes to make an up-front, lump sum payment to CPS based on the projected value of the stadium in the first ten years and reduced by the Net Present Value (NPV) of the stream of payments.  Once the stadium is constructed and appraised by the County Auditor, the parties will engage in a reconciliation process based on the appraised value.

The anticipated cost of a new Stargel Stadium is $10 million; this is exclusive of the costs that FC Cincinnati will need to expend to acquire the land for the stadium (estimated at approximately $3.5 million).  Michael Schuster Architects (MSA) has prepared renderings and early estimates of a stadium with an average construction cost of $9.9 million – but CPS will provide input on the design elements for the new stadium.

The existing Stargel Stadium Project was completed in 2004; the total project cost was $5,459,000. In 2015, CPS completed improvements to the field and track, which cost $397,000. The total final cost was $5,856,000. The stadium seats 3,000 people. Six CPS football programs utilize Stargel, and a number of other CPS, private school and community teams utilize the facility throughout the year. No part of Taft High School will be demolished as a result of the FCC Stadium construction or related construction around the property, and there shall be no material disruption of the programming at Stargel Stadium as a result of this relocation, according to the terms of the agreement.

With regard to the Board’s expectation that FC Cincinnati will pay its fair share of taxes, under the agreement, FC Cincinnati will make “payment in lieu of taxes” (PILOT) to CPS equal to 25 percent of the property tax liability on an FCC stadium without a property tax abatement.

In the years prior to the opening of the FC stadium, FC Cincinnati will hold the District harmless by paying the property taxes on the current value of the properties – estimated at approximately $70,000 per year. In FY 2019, FC will pay CPS a lump sum, advance payment equal to the PILOTs that would be due in the first ten years of stadium occupancy based on a projected $175 million stadium with standard depreciation and NPV formulas built into the up-front payment.  This up-front payment is estimated at close to $10 million.

After the stadium construction (expected in 2021), the Hamilton County Auditor will conduct an appraisal of the stadium, with any adjustments to the schedule to be payable in Year 11 after stadium occupancy.

Starting in Year 11, FC will make annual payments based on the property valuation of the FCC Stadium each year consistent with the amounts due under the 1999 agreement.  Over thirty years, this is currently estimated to result in additional $15 million of property tax revenues to CPS – for a total of $25 million.

Another critical aspect of the agreement is the Community Benefits Agreement with the coalition of community organizations and residents that the Board expects to be negotiated prior to June 30, 2018. In addition to the CBA, FC Cincinnati has committed to donate $100,000 annually for charitable support to neighborhood programs.

The agreement also provides that FC Cincinnati will establish a partnership with CPS for expanded academic, internship, and employment opportunities for CPS students.

Information About FC Cincinnati Proposed Stadium


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