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New Rupp Financing Plan Reduces Size, Ups Bonding Capacity


State, city, and University of Kentucky officials met this afternoon to discuss a revised financing plan for the Rupp Arena renovation project.

Gov. Steve Beshear says, unlike the previous plan, the version would not depend upon an increase in the city’s hotel tax. Instead, the state and city would both need an increase in bonding capacity – with the state going from $65 to $80 million and the city upping its amount from $30 million to $40 million. Officials are also considering scaling back the scope of the project.

UK has yet to hammer out the details of its 30-year lease with Rupp, but Beshear says all that’s needed at this stage is a general agreement.

"When the legislature appropriated $75 million dollars in bonding for the Yum Center, there was no written lease agreement between U of L and Yum Center. There was an agreement in principle and they subsequently worked the final details out and signed the final lease agreement. So Rupp Arena is very much in the same position as Yum was at that time," Beshear told reporters.

Behsear told reporters he hopes to convince lawmakers in the Senate that the Rupp project is well positioned to move forward.

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