Louisville Arena Authority: Plan in place for KFC Yum! Center debt

Louisville Arena Authority: Plan in place for KFC Yum! Center debt

Louisville Arena Authority: Plan in place for KFC Yum! Center debt

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by Johnny Archer

WHAS11.com

Posted on January 13, 2014 at 8:29 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – The Louisville Arena Authority Board says it has the plan to keep taxpayers off the hook from paying the KFC Yum Center’s $340 million debt.

They say they will have the documents finalized this week regarding the TIF District around the arena.

That means they will receive a portion of sales tax from businesses within two square miles of the KFC Yum! Center, instead of the originally proposed 6 square miles.

“The reason for reducing it is that we wanted the district to be more relevant to the performance of the arena,” board member Jim King said.

King also says the decrease in the TIF District will actually increase the arena’s tax income by $1.3 million a year.

“What I had learned or what I had believed is that the activities that far away from the arena were not relevant to the performance of the arena and it was dragging down the TIF performance down,” he said.

This all comes after Standard and Poor’s downgraded the arena’s bonds to junk.

Board members say the Arena Authority will still be able to pay back its debt.

They anticipate a growing downtown economy will generate a growth in TIF revenue.

“I think it’s very clear that the performance with AEG involved and the great concerts coming in, folks being downtown this all being very productive on behalf of the arena,” Alex Rorke of Hilliard Lyons said.

Officials say the KFC Yum! Center is making a profit and bringing in large crowds with events like Beyonce, Justin Timberlake and the upcoming Billy Joel concert in April.

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