Newsday: Jim Baumbach had a blog entry containing a long interview with Town of Hempstead Supervisor Kate Murray regarding the LightHouse project.
NYI Fan Central Comments:
I looked at the Coliseum event schedule today before I found this and nothing is scheduled in the building past April which could mean something or nothing.
Nice job by Newsday/Mr Baumbach getting us an interview from the one person who seems to have the most control (at this time) of where the project eventually goes, all due respect to Mr Baumbach's speculation but it means nothing.
What we did learn is most of the same things we knew already:
* The Town of Hempstead (Kate Murray) is more than willing to let Mr Wang/Mr Rechler renovate the Coliseum for Nassau County while Smg keeps all the building revenue while negotiations on the Lighthouse continue.
* Kate Murray could care less about Gary Bettman's timetable which could be a problem if Wang does sell to another owner who may not want to keep the club in the area and fight to have Smg lease voided and willing to walk away from TV revenue until 2030.
* Kate Murray wants it to be done correctly and is not interested in how long it takes for approval.
* The Town of Hempstead never talks about this team for all it's done like the politicians elsewhere who treat their local teams as special which we have seen with all the local negotiations to hand them brand new stadiums.
What I did not know was:
The Town of Hempstead only got the plans for this nine months ago for review despite all the years of negotiations.
About a hundred things have to happen for full approval from a lot of agencies yet to be heard from and we all know the political process in Nassau County is a nightmare and could kill things for any number of reasons.
Is Charles Wang or Nassau County willing to compromise any further or for both sides is it take it or leave it?
Even if Charles Wang sold the Islanders tomorrow he owns the Marriott Hotel on that property and can block future development from someone else.
Finally it fair to say Nassau County wants to keep the thirty six year old Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum operational they will have to invest hundreds of millions of dollars they do not have or eventually close the facility and forfeit the revenue the building brings the County.
Of course there is always the SMG question beyond 2014.