SANDY — This city is moving forward with plans to provide $10 million for the Real soccer stadium despite a Salt Lake County decision to opt out of the funding package.

The city plans to create a commercial development area to fund a 20-year bond for the money, economic development director Randy Sant told the City Council in a work session Tuesday.

Money that might have come from the county will instead be borrowed from other redevelopment areas in Sandy.

The $10 million deal was part of the Real development agreement the city agreed to last year. The soccer company will be required to finalize parking arrangements and complete commercial development guidelines in order to receive the money, Sant said.

The $10 million is the last step in a $45 million public funding package for the $110 million sports stadium.

If the new plan is approved, the bond would be paid through money Real would have paid in property taxes, Sant said. The borrowed money would be backed up by a pledge of franchise taxes.

Property-tax money would fund about half the payments, at least at first, Sant said. The rest of the payment would be borrowed from property-tax funding being raised by places such as the South Towne Mall. That money will be eventually be repaid.

The plan hinges on a lot of unknowns, but Sant said he is very comfortable with it. Financial advisers have looked at worse-case scenarios, he said.

Only Sandy and a few small taxing entities such as the water and district will forego their portion of property taxes to fund the bond. The school district and county also collect property taxes, but neither is expected to offer its portion.

Annually, the commercial development agreement will garner at least $150,000, Sant projected.

Sandy City has been tweaking its plan since Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon notified the city in late April that the county would not contribute.

Council members Tuesday expressed frustration at the county's opting out but were amenable to Sant's plan.

The City Council could take action on the plan as early as June 10.


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