Monday, June 1, 2009

OUTDOOR HOCKEY IN SYRACUSE?


BY NCC NEWS REPORTER: Sean Bagnardi Syracuse, NY—As the snow fell into the night over Ralph Wilson Stadium, Sidney Crosby stood at center ice with his arms raised celebrating a victory in the first American Outdoor National Hockey League game.


Syracuse will try to take a page from the Winter Classic in Buffalo and stage its own outdoor game at Alliance Bank Stadium. The game is scheduled for December 5th with the Syracuse Crunch of the AHL taking on the Binghamton Senators.


Syracuse Crunch owner Howard Dolgon and Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney have proposed the plan to county lawmakers. It is estimated that it would cost around $350,000 to stage the First American Hockey League outdoor game.


The proposal was passed within the Onondaga County Legislature’s Facilities Committee. It is now set to be voted on Tuesday within the Ways & Means Committee.


Sam Laguzza (D) of the 16th district is the sponsor of the proposal. Co-Sponsor Marty Masterpole (D) 17th district says this will help out Syracuse citizens in the long run.


“I see it as a supplement to the room occupancy tax to help prevent what could be a cost to our taxpayers," said Masterpole.

"If we lose the Crunch the War Memorial will sit vacant and cost the tax payers in the future.”


The room occupancy tax that the proposal plans to use is a separate fund that people within the county don’t pay. The money is brought in by vistors who travel to the county and stay in local hotels and motels.


Masterpole also stated that the $350,000 dollars it would cost to host the event is not totally true.


“It is the extreme cost. If you get sponsors and vendors then the total cost will decline greatly," said Masterpole.


The vote is scheduled for tomorrow 2:30pm. Two other cities besides Buffalo have put on an outdoor game, both being NHL cities (Edmonton & Chicago).





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