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Devils, Newark Reach Agreement on Arena Revenue

Newark’s City Council on Tuesday approved a revenue-sharing deal between the city and the NHL’s New Jersey Devils for the Prudential Center arena.

Jeff Zelevansky, Getty Images

The council vote Tuesday ends a bitter yearslong battle that reached a low point last year when Mayor Cory Booker called Devils chairman Jeff Vanderbeek a “Grade-A huckster” and accused him of reneging on promises made to the city.

An official with direct knowledge of the deal said it includes provisions for a ticket facility fee, ticket tax and additional parking. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the details publicly.

Last year an arbitrator ruled the city owed the Devils $2.7 million a year in parking revenue plus other considerations that totaled more than $15 million. That was roughly what the Devils owed the team in back rent, fees and other expenses. The team hadn’t paid rent since 2007 while the parking dispute dragged on.

“As partners, we have reached a resolution of the rent matter involving the City of Newark, the Newark Housing Authority and the Prudential Center,” the city and team said in a joint statement. “It is a significant achievement that is truly a win-win for all parties involved. We can now move forward together continuing to build on the successes of the last five years, which will make the Rock and the rapidly growing arena district an even greater economic engine for Newark.”

The Prudential Center opened in 2007 and is home to the Devils and Seton Hall basketball. It has hosted numerous other events including the recent Rolling Stones concert tour, an NCAA men’s basketball regional tournament and auditions for “American Idol.”

The arena deal was first reported by The Star-Ledger of Newark.


(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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