Tax Exemption Saved for Vegas Stadium Bonds
Las Vegas dodged a potentially costly bullet last week when a provision was dropped from the Republicans’ $1.4 trillion tax overhaul that would have eliminated tax-exempt status for bonds used to finance construction of professional sports stadiums.
The exemption, which was included in the Senate’s version of the bill and agreed to by House leaders last week on the eve of the bill’s final passage, will save the Las Vegas Stadium Authority millions of dollars when it goes to market to borrow the lion’s share of the funding for a $1.9 billion domed stadium for the NFL Raiders. Plans call for the Authority to float bonds covering $750 million of the stadium’s cost backed by an increase in the Clark County hotel room tax.
Similarly, the Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee is relying on the tax-exemption to keep a $1.4 billion expansion and renovation of the Las Vegas Convention Center affordable.
The original House proposal had called for elimination of the exemption to partially offset the massive tax cuts the bill provides for corporations and individuals.
Though support for the tax bill in Congress broke strictly along party lines, both Republicans and Democrats in Nevada lobbied hard to keep the exemption.