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Miami-Dade looks to Heat arena for revenue

March 28, 2012 03:45PM

AmericanAirlines Arena and Heat owner Micky Arison

Once again, a South Florida county feels its getting ripped off by a 1990s stadium deal. Miami-Dade County is looking to collect revenue for its contributions to the construction of AmericanAirlines Arena 15 years ago, Miami Today reported.

In 1997, the county provided $38 million and promised 30 years of $6.4 million annual subsidies to Heat owner Micky Arison for the construction of the $213 million arena. Under the agreement, Miami-Dade would earn 40 percent of all profits in excess of $14 million.

However, in a case eerily similar to what has played out with the arena Broward County built the Florida Panthers in Sunshine, Miami-Dade has yet to recoup a single penny from the Heat. Even last year, after adding superstars LeBron James and Chris Bosh and seeing revenues rise $15 million, Arison claimed enough expenses to leave total profit less than $14 million.

To prevent another year without due revenue, the county is requiring that the stadium ownership group provide the country with an operating budget for next year. [Miami Today]