Thursday, the main players in the Bucks Arena negotiations called a press conference at the state Capitol to present their new deal. Governor Walker opened the conference by announcing that the State will join with the County and City of Milwaukee to contribute $250 million towards a new arena.
Governor Walker announced the state would invest $80 million over the next 20 years into the new arena. Local governments will fund the rest, with the city of Milwaukee contributing $47 million, the Wisconsin Center District contributing $93 million in bonding and Milwaukee County contributing $4 million per year over the next 20 years through state debt collection.
Standing behind a podium that read “Cheaper to Keep Them”, Governor Walker made it clear that keeping the Bucks was the cheapest option for the state. If they were to leave, Wisconsin could lose an estimated $419 million over the next 20 years. He claimed the loss would create an enormous hole in the state budget needing to be filled by alternate sources.
Governor Walker was joined at the podium by Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, Speaker of the House Robin Vos, Co-chair of the Joint Finance Committee Senator Alberta Darling, and local government officials from Milwaukee. The committee did not say whether or not the new plan would be discussed in the budget or as a separate bill, but have high hopes that the Legislature and citizens would approve