Hamilton Co. can't afford a new Cincinnati Bengals HD scoreboard - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Hamilton Co. faces dilemma over new Bengals HD scoreboard

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -

When it comes to a brand new, high definition scoreboard for Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati Bengals fans find themselves on opposing sides.

"The Bengals bring a lot of profit to the community, bars, restaurants," said fan Jordan Martin.

"I don't think we should go that route.  The money can be spent in other places. The stadium.  No," said fan James Bates. 

The Bengals are currently in talks with Hamilton County Commissioners over the need for a new scoreboard. The estimated price tag is $10 million, and that's a huge problem for the county.

"We are actually saying we don't have the money," said Hamilton County Commissioner Chris Monzel.

However, according to the lease between the Bengals and Hamilton County, "If a Level 1 enhancement is in place in any 14 stadiums... Then county, at the written request of team will install any such Level 1 enhancement in the stadium complex at county's expense."

The county is willing to pay, but only for part. 

"Hopefully, they'll pay the majority of it, and we can finance what's left over a few years right now we don't have the money," Monzel said.

Bengals Spokesperson Bob Bedinghaus tells FOX19 in a statement, "The Bengals organization has worked very closely with the county over the past few years.  We recognize the financial situation Hamilton County is currently experiencing.  We do expect to participate financially in the installation of a new scoreboard."

But in the end, if the Bengals want to play tough, Monzel admits the county has no defense. 

FOX19's Amy Wagner asked Monzel, "Legally, could they buy the scoreboard and send you the bill?"  Monzel answered, "Legally, I am told with their contract, yes, that could happen. 

The Bengals' lease with the county expires in thirteen years.

Copyright 2013 WXIX. All rights reserved.

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