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Okay, rewind, reset. Let's now bring together the stories about the stadium lease passing, with a $611 million cap. The AP's story is "Council Reverses Course on Stadium Lease Deal," with a good overview of what happened and why. The Post right now has "Council Closer to Deal on Stadium" (no doubt to be updated with the final outcome of the evening), as well as "After Day of Talks, Council Ends Up in Chaos", explain how an 8-5 defeat at 8 pm turned into a 9-4 passage at 12:40 am. Of course, this is all still contingent on the Mayor and MLB saying that the council's legislation is acceptable, which they have until March 6 to do. And even though it was written before the turnaround, you should still read Boswell's "One Horribly Botched Play" to get a feel for the anger from MLB over the initial defeat of the lease. The WashTimes currently still has its pre-approval story, "Council Rejects Stadium Lease," although it was written after the council returned to re-open debate and so includes some details about the eventually successful cap amendment. What a wild day. Now we wait to hear from MLB.
More posts: Nationals Park
 

UPDATE, 12:43 pm: And now the stadium lease agreement passes, amended to include the cap, 9-4.
UPDATE, 12:20 pm: The revamped emergency cap legislation now passes, 9-4 (or at least it will, in a few seconds ;-) ). There will be plenty of stories about what is in it, but I'll just note that it says that the Mayor and MLB have until March 6 to indicate that they agree with the cap legislation, otherwise the lease is disapproved.
UPDATE, 11:19 pm: The council is still going....
UPDATE, 10:13 pm: Hey, wait a minute, the council is back in chambers, talking about the stadium again!
Tracking the stories on the failed lease vote: Here is the first full AP story, "DC Council Says No to Latest Stadium Lease Proposal." And, while it's opinion and not news, Marc Fisher's Raw Fisher blog entry on the vote, "No Joy in Mudville," is worth a read.
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More posts: Nationals Park
 

And just like that, the lease vote failed. They didn't vote on the emergency cap bill, went to the lease agreement, and it failed, 8-5. I will leave it to the Post and other media outlets to tell us What It Means, and will post their stories. Until then, the BallparkGuys.com Nats board will be discussing it in detail, I imagine. UPDATE: But I will add, before people start flinging themselves off of buildings, that the Nats won't be packing up tomorrow. There is still arbitration to go through, and MLB would have a hard time finding another jurisdiction that will give them a deal anywhere close to what DC offered. For those who wanted this settled NOW, this is a bad day, but there is still light at the end of the tunnel. Besides, maybe now Bud Selig will just go ahead and name an owner for the team, which would change the negotiation dynamic considerably....
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Stadium Vote Updates thread.
UPDATE, 8:24 pm: They're back in the council chamber. Turn on the feed.
UPDATE, 8:20 pm: Now approaching the 2.5-hour mark in their 30-minute recess. The AP says that the councilmembers have spent the past two hours "haggling over the wording of emergency legislation limiting the cost of the project." I hope they're haggling to get the reference to MLB out of the cap, otherwise all this will be for naught.
UPDATE, 7:47 pm: No, they're not back, but if you couldn't watch the session earlier today (or couldn't bear too), Just a Nats Fan was live-blogging.
UPDATE, 7:40 pm: Still in recess/private session. I haven't abandoned you :-).
UPDATE, 6:25 pm: The council is in recess after a very contentious session. They may come back to vote on the emergency cap, otherwise a vote on the lease agreement itself tonight would appear to be doomed (Vincent Orange having said as much to the Associated Press). The council is now in a private session.
UPDATE, 4:19 pm: It appears that the lease agreement (PR-619) is starting to be discussed at the council right now, but this could just be an initial procedural move. Turn on the feed :-).
UPDATE, 3:35 pm: The Post's DC Wire blog has an update from David Nakamura--I can't even summarize it, it talks about Cropp's cap bill possibly putting MLB on the hook for cost overruns, which will be unacceptable to the mayor and to MLB, so it would be possible that the pro-stadium forces would vote the cap down, then just try for an up-or-down 7-votes-needed vote on the lease. But negotiating is still going on....
UPDATE, 2:49 pm: The Post has an updated version of last night's story posted, now including all events since last night. A quote: "By packaging the council's cost cap with the lease, Cropp said the council will take just one vote on the stadium deal today and it will require nine votes among the 13-member body for approval."
UPDATE, 2:05 pm: A Reuters story quotes Linda Cropp: "The citizens need to know where the council stands on baseball in the District of Columbia. We will vote up or down today." The article also says: "The emergency legislation requires the D.C. Sports and Entertainment Commission to certify by March 7 that any hard construction costs over $300 million be paid by the team owner, savings from re-engineering or federal, private or other non-local funds."
UPDATE, 1:03 pm: A story on WTOP's web site says that Adrian Fenty believes there are enough votes to pass the (emergency?) legislation. And, just to add to the fun, the article also says: "But if the District cannot pass the lease, WTOP has learned that Virginia is ready to make a move. A spokesman for Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine tells WTOP he would be interested in pursuing the Nationals for Northern Virginia if D.C. is unable to approve the lease."
UPDATE, 11:56 am: Mayor Bow Tie is not happy with the consultant that the Council picked to review the lease and construction agreements, because he also worked for the Virginia Baseball Stadium Authority when Virginia was trying to get the Expos. Here is the mayor's press release.
UPDATE, 11:44 am: AP reports: "Members of the D-C Council may not vote on a proposed stadium lease today. Councilman Marion Barry says the lease proposal could be tabled in favor of a proposed emergency session. That would enable the Council to consider emergency legislation capping the District's costs for a new ballpark. Barry says if there was a vote on the proposed lease right now, there would not be enough votes to pass the measure. Councilman Adrian Fenty says he doesn't know if there are the nine votes needed to approve emergency legislation to establish the cap. Councilman Phil Mendelson says that could amendments might have to be introduced during the emergency session to get enough support."
UPDATE, 11:24 am: Go ahead and get your lunch, and maybe your dinner--it appears that the council will handle all of its other business first, then move to the stadium.
10:30 am: According to David Nakamura on the Post's DC Wire Blog, the council chambers are beginning to fill up, and the session should get underway soon. He also says: "Council staff, along with Mayor Williams's aides, the D.C. Sports and Entertainment Commission and a council-hired consultant, worked late into the night and early this morning on the new stadium cap that Council Chairman Linda W. Cropp wants her colleagues to approve." He says it's unclear whether Cropp has the 9 votes needed to pass the cap as emergency legislation. According to David, the emergency cap vote should come first in the session, with the lease vote coming later in the day.

More posts: Nationals Park
 

The Washington Times has a piece today (which had better be a column and not a straight news story) called "Stadium will rob neighborhood of its history", detailing what it says is all of the history that will be lost in "Southwest" because of the stadium and other development. I must say I would give the article a bit more credence if it realized that the stadium, St. Paul's church, the Navy Yard, Ken Wyban's house, and Capper Seniors #1 are all in fact in SouthEAST, not Southwest. And it's wrong about Capper/Carrollsburg residents needing $80,000 incomes to return to the new public housing to be built. (It's rather stunning that this level of misinformation and outright error can get into a paper.) It does mention that a lecture will be given by Carroll R. Gibbs called "Vanished Past, Hidden Present: The Black History the New Stadium Will Hide" at the MLK Library on Feb. 21 at 7 pm and again at the Lamond-Riggs branch on Feb. 23 at 7 pm.
More posts: staddis, Nationals Park