Indiana lawmakers approve funding bill for Pacers, Indy Eleven


Rendering provided by City of Indianapolis

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Today the state took another big step in the effort to keep the Pacers in Indiana another 25 years.

The Indiana Senate voted to concur on a bill this afternoon that would pave the way for funding for renovations at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, including a new plaza.

The plaza would host year-round events for things like concerts, ice skating and basketball games.

Senate Bill 7 would commit nearly $800 million for operating expenses and to fund capital projects.

That funding would come from a mix of existing income, sales, innkeepers, admission and auto rental taxes. They say residents’ taxes will not go up.

Mayor Joe Hogsett says it’s a big deal for the city and the rest of the state.

“I think it’s an important investment for our city to be making. You know the long-term economic development strategy of our sports teams has paid great dividends for our city. So I’m glad to see that we’re taking steps to ensure that that continues,” Hogsett said.

The bill also opens the door for a new soccer stadium for Indy Eleven, but any future developments would also have to be approved by the City County Council.

The bill now goes to the governor’s desk. And then the Indianapolis City County Council would have to give final approval of the overall deal before renovations start at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Eleven Park issued this statement:

With Senate Bill 7 now headed to the Governor’s desk, we are ready to kick off a new era for Indy Eleven professional soccer and the world’s most popular sport in Indiana – with no new taxes and no appropriations from city or state governments.

This is the latest step in the legislative process.  With the Governor’s signature, we can continue along the path to fully capturing this one-in-a-generation opportunity to secure the future of the world’s game in our capital city.

Eleven Park is grateful to Senate President Pro Tempore Rod Bray and the bill’s Senate authors; Sen. Ryan Mishler, Sen. Travis Holdman, and Sen. Jack Sandlin, and co-authors; Sen. Jean Breaux and Sen. Jon Ford, and the bill’s House sponsors; Rep. Todd Huston, Rep. Cindy Kirchhofer, Rep. Gregory Porter, and Rep. Dave Heine, all of whom have provided leadership and guidance as the bill has moved through the legislative process.

Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett issued this statement:

I want to applaud this afternoon’s concurrence on Senate Bill 7, but I also want to applaud the way this legislation was crafted — through state-local collaboration, without a tax or fee increase, and with broad bipartisan support.

I offer my personal thanks to legislative leaders in the house and senate for their collective work to craft a bill that protects Hoosier taxpayers and preserves this key economic engine for the next generation of Indiana residents. I look forward to continued conversations with state and local leaders about how we can fully realize the Capital Improvement Board’s 25-year vision for these critical assets.

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