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Stadium Bondholders Sue Over County Prop. A

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An architect's rendering of the new Busch Stadium.

By Kevin Lavery, KWMU

St. Louis – A group of Cardinals stadium bondholders wants a St. Louis County judge to rule that the payment on the bonds they purchased nearly a year ago will not be subject to voter approval.

The bondholders say the recent passage of Proposition A - which requires that any public funding for sports complexes be put to a vote - should not be retroactively applied to the bonds they purchased last December.

But co-defendant Fred Lindecke with the Coalition Against Public Funding for Stadiums believes the public would overwhelmingly defeat the county's 2005 bond payment.

"And that will end the bond issue, there will be no further payments due, and that's how the county voters--taxpayers, save $108 million they are otherwise going to have to pay to retire that bond issue up to 2033," Lindecke said.

However, plaintiff's attorney Ted Noel says if voters side with Lindecke, the county could have major financial problems.

"If the terms of the bonds were allowed to be changed retroactively, no one would be willing to purchase the bonds, and certainly would impact the good triple-A credit rating that St. Louis County enjoys," Noel said.

A hearing on the matter will be held December 14. Defendants say they'll ask the court to set an April 5 election date to allow voters to decide whether the county should proceed with its 2005 bond payment.

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