Cuyahoga County Council to Vote on Quicken Loans Arena Deal

The Cavaliers presented county council with this rendering of the proposed arena renovation.
The Cavaliers presented county council with this rendering of the proposed arena renovation. [Cuyahoga County Council]
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Cuyahoga County Council is set to vote tonight on a plan to issue $140 million in bonds to pay for major renovations at Quicken Loans Arena.

Principal and interest payments on the bonds are expected to add up to around $205 million, paid over 17 years, according to county financial advisor Tim Offtermatt. He said the cost of debt service will depend on the interest rate set when the county sells the bonds.

Of that amount, the Cavs anticipate paying roughly $100 million, or about $6 million a year, in additional rent payments, according to Offtermatt. 

The city and county will finance the public half of the deal through several different streams of revenue, according to a funding breakdown Offtermatt provided last week:

  • $18 million associated with the county-owned Hilton Hotel
  • $44.1 million in hotel bed tax revenues that otherwise would have funded Destination Cleveland, the tourism bureau
  • $8.7 million collected in admissions taxes on playoff events at the Q through 2024
  • $3.4 million from tax collections on sales at the Q
  • $88.4 million from Cleveland’s admissions tax on games and other events at the Q between from 2024 through 2034

The county would also use this revenue to build up an estimated $60 million in multiple reserve funds.

Over the next few weeks, Cleveland city council will consider legislation extending the city’s admissions tax and directing the estimated $88.4 million in revenue toward this deal. 

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