Province proposes new agreement for IG Field
WINNIPEG -- The Province of Manitoba wants a new agreement with the Winnipeg Football Club and IG Field's ownership group Triple B Stadium Inc.
In a late news release Friday evening, Manitoba's Finance Minister Scott Fielding said the province is proposing a new agreement between the province, the Winnipeg Football Club and Triple B Stadium Inc. which includes University of Manitoba, the City of Winnipeg and the Winnipeg Football Club.
The province said the current agreement was negotiated by the previous NDP government in 2011, which approved two loans totalling $160 million for the construction of the new stadium.
The province said although the Winnipeg Football Club and Triple B have been making all their payments—the current agreement has created a situation where the capital funding to maintain IG Field remains with no balance and there's no way to sustain the fund going forward.
Fielding said the current agreement was “poorly designed and exposes all parties involved to an unacceptable level of risk."
The province is proposing a new capital account of $10 million which would be used for ongoing capital repairs at the stadium. The province said the Winnipeg Football Club would be responsible for managing it.
It is welcome news for Winnipeg Blue Bombers President and CEO Wade Miller.
"It is a good step forward in protecting a community asset of the Investor's Group Field," Miller told CTV News Friday evening.
Miller said he has been working with the province on this agreement for many years, and said he looks forward to working with the City of Winnipeg.
Part of the new deal proposes the City of Winnipeg modify its legal obligations of Triple B which would allow for entertainment funding taxes and facility fees on tickets sold to go towards the IG Field capital fund contributions and stadium operations.
A spokesperson for the City of Winnipeg said the city is aware of proposed changes from the province, and will be preparing an administrative report for City Council's consideration.
A spokesperson for Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman said he is pleased to see changes coming to the agreement.
"Having previously advocated for changes to Triple B, the Mayor believes this is a step in the right direction and he looks forward to seeing a report from the City’s public service so he can continue to protect taxpayers while supporting our Grey Cup Champion Winnipeg Blue Bombers," a spokesperson for Bowman told CTV News.
Miller said he hopes the agreement will go through in shot order.