OAKLAND RAIDERS RAP
The Raiders turned down a proposal from Oakland and Alameda County to end litigation between the parties. In a press release Aug. 30, 2000, the team called the offer "a public face saving-sham." Earlier in the day, the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority reportedly offered a settlement to Raiders owner Al Davis (left). In a letter sent to Davis, the Authority said it would drop pending litigation against the Raiders if the team agreed to drop pending litigation against Oakland and Alameda County. Highlights of the deal included extending the team's lease at Network Associates Coliseum from 2011 to 2025, extending the life of personal seat licenses and building a Raiders Hall of Fame. The licenses would be good for as long as the team remains in Oakland, rather than the 11-year life when they were offered in 1995.
Consumers must pay for PSLs to have the right to buy Raiders season tickets through the year 2005. For the 2000 season, prorated PSLs range from $150 to $2,400. Club seats (plaza level) are priced at $420 to $9,600.
There were about 27,500 license holders entering the 2000 exhibition season, according to published reports.
Oakland and Alameda County sued the Raiders in September 1997 to honor the remaining time on their lease at Network Associates Coliseum. The team countersued in July 1998, claiming the 11-year lease is invalid because sellouts were falsely promised before the agreement was signed.
The trial is expected to begin next year.
A Sacramento Superior Court judge ruled in March that the city and county have a valid lease with the Raiders, but also allowed the team to pursue damages. The team has filed a $1.1 billion lawsuit.
The Ties That Bind
The Raiders also rejected a settlement proposal by the county in June 1998. The proposal included ending all ligitation between the parties, requiring the team to contribute $1 million annually for game-day expenses and extending the Raiders' lease for an additional 10 years. The Raiders wouldn't discuss the settlement offer with public officials unless the county first dropped its lawsuit against the team, according to published reports. The Raiders claim negotiators for the county guaranteed sellouts at the Coliseum if the team returned in 1995.
The Raiders played in Los Angeles for 13 years from 1982 to 1994. At a news conference July 7, Raiders attorney Joseph Alioto Jr. said the team lost $52 million in tickets revenue each in 1995 and 1996 because games weren't sellouts. The public agencies claim no promise of sellouts ever was made to the Raiders.
The Raiders also are embroiled in a lawsuit with the NFL. The league sued the Raiders over a failed plan to return to Oakland in 1994, and over revenue-sharing discrepancies after the franchise came back to Oakland the following year. The NFL claimed the Raiders scheduled games in Oakland without league approval. The Raiders claimed the league blocked the team's move to Oakland in 1994, interfered with the move in 1995 and destroyed negotiations between the team and Hollywood Park.