Late notice by local sports officials put Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and the rest of the Tourism Development Council in a tough spot on Friday morning, as they scrambled to put together a plan to complete the city’s bid for the 2019 MLS All Star game.
The county didn’t receive information on the bid until late last week and had to get the deadline extended by MLS to have their 2019 All Star game played at the brand new stadium here in Downtown Orlando. The game is expected to be a “Week Long Takeover” by MLS, resulting in $4.7 million in estimated economic impact to the area and 6,700 hotel room nights which could boost the local tourism development tax.
The challenge is going through the necessary steps needed to approve the $350,000 needed for the bid. With an August 25th deadline, the county will need to reconstruct it’s agreement with VISIT Orlando (the local tourism development agency}, vet the agreement and it’s projections, stand up an advisory board, and have it approved by the County Commission.
Jacobs was wary about rushing he deal without a proper vetting process, especially with the recent scrutiny on economic development programs and agreements with private entities. VISIT Florida was blasted last year for a deal it made with rapper Pitbull to promote the state without offering enough transparency of it’s process and the dollars spent to complete the agreement.
The board did approve a resolution type motion approving of the proposal and asking the County Commission to approve the deal when it does make it to their meeting, which could be as soon as August 1st or as late as August 22nd.
“The board knows there is an interest with this.” said Jacobs “We’re going to do all we can to bring this in before sundown.”