New York Islanders: Nassau County Renews Effort to Keep Team
As reported by Newsday, perhaps the most open call for all suitors to keep the Islanders here in Nassau has been put out by Ed Mangano. It's the latest effort following months of silence since the last time Ed Mangano hatched a plan in mid-January to get developers to come and work to renovate or build a new arena.
This time around the plans are far more open to anyone than previously. Before we had a call for a few specific developers, mostly aimed at the 'Association for Better Long Island'. After brief talks about how they may invest and develop the site, the fans were once again relinquished to silence on the matter.
It has been a struggling effort thus far. Mr. Wang hasn't said so much as a peep about him investing in anything whatsoever, and Mr. Mangano has received little interest from those he sought to develop the site.
Mangano has now resorted to calling for any developer to head up construction on the site and becoming the chief of development as well. Basically, the winning bidder will be the sole developer of the site and have complete control so long as the plans meet the ridiculous Town of Hempstead's zoning for the land. It will feature a new or renovated Coliseum, retail and housing space as well.
The most vital part of this, is that the winning bidder must begin negotiations soon thereafter with Mr. Wang and the Islanders to guarantee the Isles stay here in Nassau.
Some may see this as a bit of a desperate attempt, and they should. In all honesty, I personally believe Mr.Mangano is starting to actually realize the grave financial shock that will follow with the Islanders departure. They make up a steady yearly income for the county, which is financially troubled as it is, and the loss of that income will certainly be felt in the county.
Mangano stated in Newsday, "Now's the time for us to come together and collectively end the island of no and go forward with the island of yes."
I stated in February that Nassau had three to five months to come up with something to have it completed in time for the Islanders to have somewhere to go in Nassau when their 2015 lease is up. It is now six days short of five months having passed and here we are with another plan.
Of course, it being Nassau county, there wouldn't be itself without some kind of political meddling.
Democrat Jay Jacobs naturally has called the idea "counterproductive" (per Newsday) as it seemingly removes Nassau's ability to control the situation directly. One must wonder if this is yet another famous Nassau politicians vendetta, simply because it's head up by the opposite party.
Islanders fans can only hope that a developer is willing to take Mangano and Nassau up on this offer and keep this team here. There doesn't seem to be much else beyond Nassau or Wang investing their own cash into the area. Nassau said no to Mr. Wang already, then Nassau's people said no to their own money going into it.
There's not much else left as an option beyond this.
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