Kansas Making Moves to Entice Kansas City Sports Teams

On Tuesday, Kansas lawmakers passed a bill to create a STAR Bond District, moving closer to potentially enticing the Chiefs and Royals to relocate. The bill passed through both the House and Senate, despite concerns about the success of STAR Bond projects and whether the teams are using Kansas for leverage against Missouri.

Rep. Susan Ruiz expressed skepticism, noting that the bill mainly benefits urban counties while neglecting the rest of the state. Conversely, Rep. Sean Tarwater emphasized the need for Kansas to make a competitive offer to keep the teams in the metro area, avoiding the fate of Missouri, which has lost several sports teams in the past.

Following the vote, both the Chiefs and Royals released statements showing appreciation for Kansas’ proactive efforts and indicating their interest in exploring the new opportunities provided by the legislation. Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas, however, warned that this move reignites competition between Kansas and Missouri, adding uncertainty to the stadium discussions.

The bill now awaits Governor Laura Kelly’s signature. If signed, it would allow Kansas to fund up to 70% of the stadium construction costs, with a year for negotiations to commence. Governor Kelly expressed her support, highlighting the potential economic boost and the chance for Kansas to become a professional sports hub.

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