Reporting Mona Rivera
MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Several hundred union members, construction workers and Islanders fans gathered to implore the Nassau County legislature to approve a plan to replace the aging Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
The legislature must decide whether to go ahead with a referendum to borrow $400 million to build the new hockey arena.
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Four-time Stanley Cup champion Butch Goring insisted that the Islanders are on the rise and said it’s time for the building to catch up.
Team owner Charles Wang told the crowd that the plan would keep the team on Long Island until 2045.
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Even if the plan goes to a vote in August and is approved it will face another hurdle – the Nassau Interim Finance Authority, a state watchdog group, will have to approve it as well.
The county, which is facing a $176 million budget deficit, is under the thumb of NIFA.
The Islanders hinted at leaving Nassau County when its contract expires in 2015 should a new Coliseum not be built.
What do you want to see happen to the Nassau Coliseum site? Sound off below…