The Panthers and the City of Charlotte have a deal that would result in upgrades to Bank of America Stadium. But to the extent that deal relies upon state money, the deal is about to fall apart.
According to Jim Morrill of the Charlotte Observer, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory said Monday that state money won’t be available to the project.
“We don’t have the money in the state to address that issue,” McCrory said. “I have never been actually asked for the $62 million, nor do we have it.”
Panthers president Danny Morrison apparently isn’t ready to take “we don’t have the money” as an answer.
“We have met with state officials multiples times,” Morrison said in a statement issued to the Observer. “They have always been supportive of our efforts and indicated the importance of the Panthers to both the State and Charlotte. We are hopeful that ultimately these assurances translate into support for the team.”
The deal between the team and the city would result in the team agreeing to stay in town for at least 15 more years. Without that agreement, the Panthers would in theory potentially relocate — even though owner Jerry Richardson owns the stadium.
Sure, Richardson (or whoever buys the team from him or his estate) would be abandoning the stadium. At some point, however, a deal proposed by a new city would make the prospect of leaving attractive, even if it meant the Panthers would be boarding up their current home and leaving.