Sports authority gets on base

In December 2020, the Knoxville City and Knox County Commission voted to approve the formation of a sports authority to oversee construction and operation of a baseball stadium.

A sports authority, the members of which typically are appointed, is a quasi-government body that oversees the project. By law, local governments can create a sports authority, which can issue revenue bonds to pay for stadium construction. The debt belongs to the sports authority – which means it stays off the books of the city and county.

Also by law, state sales tax generated by the facility – 7% on tickets, concessions and merchandise – would go to the City of Knoxville and Knox County to pay off debt to construct the stadium.

The next steps are razing the old site – which is an eyesore and will be done no matter what happens – holding public meetings and voting on the financing plan. If all goes well, a ground-breaking could be held in late summer or early fall.

Read the News Sentinel’s coverage of the vote by County Commission by clicking HERE and the vote by City Council by clicking HERE.

A lineup full of details remains to be done, so there is a long way to go to get baseball home. But Grand Slam Knox got on base!

Of course, we celebrated on Twitter.