February 5, 2013

Rio Nuevo Settlement Offer to City of Tucson

The Rio Nuevo District Board has reached a settlement agreement with the City of Tucson in matter of lawsuits filed on behalf of the taxpayers of Arizona. The newly reconstituted Rio Nuevo District Board is confident that the settlement is in the best interest of the taxpayers, and the residents of the greater metropolitan Tucson area.

Rio Nuevo Settlement items of interest:

• In exchange for dismissing three lawsuits against the City of Tucson, Rio Nuevo will be reimbursed over $16,000, 000 for the Depot Garage, whose ownership has been disputed.

• The City of Tucson will also deed to Rio Nuevo the “Arena lot,” which is 8.5 acres at Congress and the Freeway. Rio Nuevo filed a lawsuit to gain ownership of that property and the City has now agreed to deed it to the District.

• The City of Tucson will also deed to Rio Nuevo about half of the Westside acreage, where title was disputed in a lawsuit.

• The settlement has resurrected $ 6.5M of bond funds and Rio Nuevo will invest most of that into the Tucson Convention Center, as was required by the original bond memorandum.

• The City of Tucson will forgive about $1.2M of debt from Rio Nuevo.

• Each party releases each other from current or future claims; however the City of Tucson is not released from third party intervention or investigation as it relates to the Arizona Attorney General, the Internal Revenue Service, bondholders, and taxpayer organizations.

The FBI and Arizona Attorney General’s investigations remain outstanding but are out of the control of Rio Nuevo.

The newly reconstituted Rio Nuevo Board intends to immediately upgrade the Tucson Convention Center and will immediately invest in two downtown hotel projects. Plans will be made for the commercial development of property immediately west of the Santa Cruz Wash.

The settlement will save the newly reconstituted Rio Nuevo District over $1 million a year in legal fees, which will now serve the District’s mission; to participate and facilitate the development of a vibrant downtown Tucson.

To read the settlement click here.

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