Visit NFL from the sidelines on the new Observer-Reporter site:

Friday, November 14, 2008

Ownership getting settled

Dan and Art Rooney II have reportedly reached an agreement with the other four sons of team founder Art Rooney to purchase their shares of the Steelers.

That would keep ownership of the team in the family and resolve issues the NFL had with the Rooneys about dual ownership of the Steelers and several racing tracks involved with gambling.

So much for the sky-is-falling crowd who thought there would be a day in the near future in which the Steelers would not be owned and run by the Rooney family.


bob said...

But will Dan Rooney now be in massive debt, and be forced to trim the team's payroll?

Dale Lolley said...

No. The salary cap not only mandates what teams can't spent above, it also has a point that they can't go under.
Also, he has some investors who are putting up some of the money. There will be some debt, but the league also won't allow teams to take on huge amounts of debt, either. They have a limit.
They won't be trimming payroll.

adamg said...

Is it just me or does Tim Rooney seem to be the one most anxious to avoid paying tax on his inherited money? It's not like the Steelers are going to cut ticket prices to help out their fans, some of whom are undoubtedly facing tough financial times right now. I'm sorry, but I'm just not working up any sympathy here.

Dale Lolley said...

What difference does it make whether the money was inherited or not. They've continued to build it up.
Let's say you're supposed to get $200 million from your ownership and after the government gets done with you now, you're only getting $100 million. But if you wait another couple of months, you're only going to get $90 million. You think you'd be a little pissed?
I know I would be. People look at their own finances.

SRK said...

I think the brothers should cut him some slack...He is one of the main reason that the Steelers are worth this much to begin with...He has not only help build the Steelers but the NFL.

Patrick said...

Estate taxes are a funny thing and I honestly don't know the exact details of Obama's plan, but i know they will be higher

It almost unecessarily puts Dan Rooney in a better bargaining position than he was before.

That said, you do a business deal, you are on the hook for your own taxes, whatever the rate may be. If Dan knew this going in, so did Tim, so they are on the same playing field in my opinion and the deal should have been constructed in such a way, that is if before Dec 31st X amount, if after X + .xx %. If Tim's laywers and financial advisors didn't agree to that, then that is on them.

adamg said...

Dale, surely you jest. The Rooneys "built up" their franchise on the backs of people like me who are long time season ticket holders. We all pay for the team through prices on goods from businesses that advertise on NFL games as well.

Do you realize how much money 90 or 100M is? Personally, I've lived a frugal life and saved. I doubt I will have even close to 1M when I am in my 70s.

Dale Lolley said...

Nobody is forcing you to pay that money Adam. But the government does force taxes to be paid.
I guarantee you that if you won the lottery tomorrow and the payout was, say $3 million, and you got less than half of that by the time all was said and done, you'd be complaining about it.
It's all relative.

Dale Lolley said...

Also, the brothers see that the Steelers are worth $1.2 billion.
If you owned 16 percent of $1.2 billion, would you be happy about only getting 90 million on your return?
I know I wouldn't be.

Roger said...

What was the value of the Steelers before Heinz Field was built? Now, the value ranges from $800M to $1.2B.

I recall the increase to be in the order of three or four fold. In other words, the value of the team has risen significantly SINCE Heinz Field was built.

Now, since a portion of Heinz Field was built with public funds, how about giving back the proportionate amount to the taxpayers? All brothers are going to walk away from this deal with much greater wealth than they had a only a few years ago. Why? Because the public funded a portion of the stadium. Isn't only right that the public get some return on their investment?

Anonymous said...

Dan Rooney won out the battle with his brothers in large part because of the victory of Barack Obama. It now makes more sense as to why he was supporting Obama so heavily. What was good for Dan ended up being bad for his brother's position. Politics does make strange bedfellows.