Mike Dee: Sun Life Stadium bill passes committee

Miami Dolphins seeking public money for stadium renovation

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MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. - Legislation allowing the Miami Dolphins to use state and local tax dollars to help renovate Sun Life Stadium passed the Florida House Economic Affairs Committee, according to chief executive officer Mike Dee.

"With today's House Economic Affairs Committee vote and yesterday's Senate Rules Committee vote, the momentum to give Miami-Dade voters the final say on bringing Super Bowls, college championships and international soccer to Miami continues to build," Dee said in a statement.

The Dolphins are seeking $3 million a year for the next 30 years as part of a package to help pay for nearly $400 million worth of improvements.

Backers contend it could yield positive economic improvements because it would help South Florida lure a Super Bowl to the region. But some critics have derided the legislation (SB 306) as "corporate welfare."

The bill also would give Sun Life Stadium a chance to get state support this year as part of an effort to attract a Super Bowl to South Florida. The legislation would allow the Legislative Budget Commission to approve money before 2014 if the money is being used to help lure a "signature event" to the stadium.

The team has agreed to repay the state -- if Miami-Dade voters say yes to raising the hotel bed tax in mainland Miami-Dade by one per cent in a local referendum.

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