MCC Signs Baseball Stadium Deal

Now baseball promoter Pete Heitman has a real reason to smile.

This picture of Heitman was taken the night both he and Mark Houser refused to identify themselves.

You can see him broadly smiling as he walks in front of the vending machines outside the boardroom at McHenry County College after the secret meeting, which the two attended with Frontier Minor League Baseball League Commissioner Bill Lee. Lee snuck out the back door.

On May 24th, Heitman hit the jackpot.

That’s when MCC Board Chairman Scott Summers and Secretary George Lowe signed the no-bid, 20-year, 20-acre lease of the baseball stadium and nearby property with F. Peter Heitman and his McHenry/Lake County Professional Baseball Group, L.L.C., formed two weeks before. May 24th.

None of the principals of the Limited Liability Corporation have been identified, although Armine Ter-Vardanyan of Los Angeles’s LegalZoom.com, Inc., is listed as Assistant Secretary.

McHenry County Blog obtained a copy of the contract (a license agreement) as a result of filing a Freedom of Information request.

MCC withheld the May 24th lease until yesterday.

The lease, renewable through 2038, gives Heitman’s group exclusive use of 10 acres for the stadium and hospitality tents, plus nonexclusive use of 10 acres for parking 2000 cars.

There are no dollar figures suggesting how much money the lease will provide MCC.

Other documents, however, indicate the soon-to-be-issued debt certificates will require $34 to $40 million in principal and interest be repaid.

In the lease, the biggest number refers to a $250,000 minimum payment per year, but it does not begin until 2009.

There are percentages strewn throughout the contract, but no estimates of how much will be paid the college.

For example, MCC will get 10% of gross ticket sales, suites, gross advertising and broadcasting revenues, game and event revenue, pouring rights, etc. And 5% of the price of food and beverages, not the sale price, unless they are catered by an unrelated third party. All of these are after sales or use taxes, however.

Naming rights of the stadium will belong to the college, but Heitman will get reimbursed for marking and selling the naming rights.

It sounds like virtually a no risk deal for Heitman.


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