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New agreement removes last legal barrier to Scottrade Center upgrades

The interior of the Scottrade Center on Jan. 2, 2017.
File photo | Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio
A settlement struck earlier this week between Comptroller Darlene Green and Kiel Center Partners removes the last legal barrier to upgrading the Scottrade Center, pictured here in January 2017.

St. Louis Comptroller Darlene Green has dropped her legal challenge to a judge’s ruling that ordered her to approve financing for upgrades to the Scottrade Center.

A deal approved earlier this week clears the last remaining hurdle to the city issuing $100 million in bonds to cover the renovations, including new plumbing for the ice rink and updates to the lighting and sound systems.

Aldermen narrowly approved the financing agreement last February. But Green refused to sign the required documents over concerns the deal would harm the city’s credit rating. A judge ordered her to do so after Kiel Center Partners sued – a decision Green appealed.

Under the terms of the settlement, Green drops her appeal, and the case is thrown out. In exchange, Green got language making it clear she can look for other sources of money to pay off the bonds.

“I am pleased that all parties were able to come together, and grateful for the hard work of my staff and others who made this agreement possible,” Green said in a statement. “It is my hope it will mitigate impact on the city’s general fund and credit rating.”

Chris Zimmerman, the president and chief executive officer of the St. Louis Blues, also praised the deal.

“We are pleased to have resolved all the issues necessary to allow us to complete the financing and construction of our Phase I improvement to Scottrade,” he said. “We are confident these improvements will benefit all enjoying events at Scottrade, the City of St. Louis and our region.”

Follow Rachel on Twitter: @rlippmann

Rachel is the justice correspondent at St. Louis Public Radio.

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