• To PSL Or Not To PSL At New Stadium?

    Posted by on March 28th, 2008 · Comments (2)

    Via Crains -

    Tribune Co. is considering personal seat licenses at Wrigley Field as part of a plan to sell the ballpark to the Illinois Sports Facility Authority, Alderman Tom Tunney (44th) said in an interview Friday.

    But Cubs management denied that seat licenses were on the table.

    Personal seat licenses, or PSLs, are typically one-time fees for the right to buy season tickets, on top of the annual charge for the tickets themselves. PSLs are common among National Football League franchises, including the Chicago Bears, which implemented PSLs to help fund a $606-million revamping of Soldier Field earlier this decade. The Bears’ PSLs currently range from $2,400 to $10,000 per seat.

    PSLs are rare for the 30 teams in Major League Baseball, though the New York Yankees recently added them for a new stadium expected to open in 2009.

    The Yankees are going PSL? That’s not what I last heard. So, I looked now and found this at The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel:

    However, the use of PSL’s is somewhat controversial, since long-time season ticket holders may resent having to pay an additional one-time “user fee” to have the right to renew their seats. Also, government officials may not react favorably where a team owner seeks to introduce PSL’s at a new facility that has also received substantial public funding. These are two key reasons why neither the New York Mets nor Yankees plan to require the purchase of PSL’s for their new stadia, even though it is conservatively estimated that by doing so each team could raise more than the Cardinals’ $40 million.

    Well, for whatever the reason, and to whomever deserves the credit, here’s a big THANK YOU for making sure the Yankees don’t go the PSL route.

    Comments on To PSL Or Not To PSL At New Stadium?

    1. MJ
      March 28th, 2008 | 4:08 pm

      What worries me about this is that the Yanks (can’t speak for the Mets) paid for their own stadium out of pocket, not including the public funds that were kicked in for infrastructure improvements in the area (Metro North, parking, etc.). So the Yanks COULD say, “well, for $1.3B, we should be able to sell PSL’s if we want to…”

      The Cards probably don’t rape and pillage their fans the way the Yanks do. It would really stink if we had to pay a PSL on top of what we already pay for our seats.

    2. Rich
      March 28th, 2008 | 9:13 pm

      Infrastructure should count because those improvements were probably a condition precedent to the project being approved.

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