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Front Page » Top Stories » Funds handoff to Orange Bowl team?

Funds handoff to Orange Bowl team?

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Written by on December 10, 2014

Funds handoff to Orange Bowl team?

A county push to help the Orange Bowl Committee, a sports non-profit that’s behind the annual Orange Bowl football game at Sun Life Stadium, in hosting semifinal college football games, annual Orange Bowl games and possible future championship games includes a $1.35 million government financing plan.

Until recently, the Bowl Championship Series was the selection process in place for the national college football championship. Through this process, five bowl games were held among the 10 top-ranked college football teams in the National Collegiate Athletic Association. Through this process, once every four years Miami-Dade County hosted a college football championship game.

But a new selection process, the College Football Playoff, was instituted recently. In this format, the four best teams move on to two semifinal games, which are followed by a championship game.

Under this format, Greater Miami is to host a semifinal game every three years. That means a college semifinal game is to be held here in 2015, 2018, 2021 and 2024.

During the years when the Orange Bowl Committee isn’t hosting a semifinal game, the committee can bid for the county to host the championship game.

To aid the Orange Bowl Committee in hosting semifinal games and annual Orange Bowl games and in gaining a competitive edge in its bids to host college championship games, a county government proposal has surfaced to award the committee county funding – both cash and funding in the form of in-kind services.

County Commissioner Barbara Jordan, whose district includes Sun Life Stadium, has sponsored the funding plan in a resolution that might come up for vote in front of a Miami-Dade commission committee.

According to county records, about $650,000 of the funding is to come from Miami-Dade government’s general fund and the rest is to come in the form of $700,000 worth of Miami-Dade police and fire rescue in-kind services provided at no cost to the Orange Bowl Committee. If this plan is approved, the Orange Bowl Committee is to receive parts of the $1.35 million funding in fiscal years 2014-15, 2015-16, 2016-17 and 2017-18.

Here are logistics of the $1.35 million funding plan:

•Each year when the annual Orange Bowl games are held (fiscal years 2014-15, 2016-17 and 2017-18), the county is to give the Orange Bowl Committee $100,000 from the Miami-Dade general fund and up to $150,000 in game and event-related in-kind services from the county’s police and fire rescue departments.

•And in 2015, when Miami-Dade is to host a semifinal college football game, the county is to give the Orange Bowl Committee $350,000 from the general fund and up to $250,000 worth of game and event-related in-kind services from the county’s police and fire rescue departments.

Ms. Jordan wasn’t available to comment on the proposal, her staff said. The Orange Bowl Committee also didn’t answer Miami Today’s inquiries into the proposal.

The proposal was on a commission committee agenda Tuesday, but the meeting was canceled for lack of a quorum.

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