ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Like a fight breaking out before a hockey game, there’s some tough legal checking going on before a trial gets started in a lawsuit that seeks to cut off taxpayer money for renovation of the Scottrade Center. Alderwoman Cara Spencer says attorneys are fighting over whether the Blues ownership group should open their books to prove they need taxpayer help.
“We do that even for wellfare recipients. If you’re looking for food stamps we require people to show need, and we ought to do that for big corporations as well,” she says.
Spencer says the suit will argue the board of aldermen was misled to believe the city is required in the lease to pay for improvements to the hockey arena. She claims the lease clearly states that obligation lies with the Kiel Center Partners.
Jeff Rainford, spokesman for Kiel Center Partners, says the group is not refusing to open its books.
“They’re more than willing and have shown, they’ve shown the press, they’ve shown the aldermen, they’ll show anybody that wants to see them that have lost over the last ten years $130 million. Over the life of the franchise they’ve lost $500 million,” he says.
Rainford calls that claim one of many pieces of misinformation put forth by Alderwoman Spencer, some of them slanderous. He’s looking forward to the trial to “set the record straight.”