Nevada taxpayers will have to ante up to make Sheldon Adelson’s dream of building a domed stadium in the desert come true.
On Tuesday, the Nevada Senate voted 16-5 to pass Senate Bill 1, which will raise hotel room taxes in Clark County—where Las Vegas is located, local media outlets have reported. The bill now moves to the Assembly.
The funds gained from the increased room tax—totaling $750 million—will be used to build a 65,000-seat domed stadium to lure the Oakland Raiders into the Nevada desert. The stadium is expected to cost $1.9 billion to complete, and the funds will go a long way towards helping Raiders owner Mark Davis, who has previously committed $500 million, and Sands Corp. chairman Sheldon Adelson, who also pledged $650 million to the project.
Under Adelson’s proposal, $750 million worth of municipal bonds will be sold, and the securities will be paid by a 0.9 percent tax—or about $1.08 per night—on hotel rooms.
However, getting the Nevada lawmakers to sign off on the funding plan doesn’t mean that the Raiders’ move to Las Vegas is already a done deal since the National Football League still has to approve the transfer. The league has been known to be quite vocal in shunning Las Vegas in the past because of its legal sportsbooks, so it will be quite a feat to have the conservative league agree to have one of its 32 franchises move to the Sin City.
If the plan pushes through, the stadium could pave the way towards making Las Vegas a sports town—a piece of good news for the city that has long been a pariah for professional sports leagues. In June, the National Hockey League confirmed that it will be expanding to the Nevada city in time for the 2017-2018 season.