Inside The Bills

Brandon with lease update

Posted by Chris Brown on September 26, 2012 – 10:05 am

Bills CEO Russ Brandon in his weekly appearance on Bills flagship WGR Sportsradio 550 provided the latest on lease negotiations Wednesday morning not long after expressing a desire to have all three parties (Bills, Erie County, New York state) sitting down at the negotiating table together.

“It has been positive. We’ve have great dialogue with the governor and lieutenant governor Duffy, who I’ve known for close to 20 years when he was the police chief of Rochester and then the mayor,” said Brandon. “We’ve had some excellent dialogue and I anticipate the pace will quicken over the next few months and look forward to sitting down and starting the discussions and resetting the calendar.”

Brandon said he’s expecting an initial meeting to take place very soon and that all three parties will be represented.

“I feel very good about where the future of this is going to take us,” said Brandon.

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Brandon on lease progress

Posted by Chris Brown on March 16, 2012 – 1:10 pm

Bills CEO Russ Brandon made an appearance on Bills flagship station WGR Sportsradio 550 Friday and was asked about the state of the team’s comprehensive study on stadium improvements, which are a precursor to stadium lease talks with Erie County. Here’s what Brandon had to offer.

We’re coming down the conclusion,” said Brandon. “We’ve had some discussions with County Executive Poloncarz and his team. We’re coming down to the conclusion by the first quarter of the year of our master plan study with Populus. We have some thoughts and ideas on how to improve the facility, and improve the experience for our great fans. In short order we’ll be spending some significant time looking at that and hopefully moving forward with it.”

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz recently stated that it’s his goal to have a new lease agreement in place before training camp in late July this summer. Brandon said he shares that optimism.

“We do,” Brandon said. “When two parties are motivated and we all have the same vision and we’re working towards that… it’ll take a lot of time and effort, but everybody is on the same page and we looked forward to working on it.”

The Bills lease with Erie County expires on July 31, 2013.

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Cuomo “optimistic” despite hurdles

Posted by Chris Brown on January 27, 2012 – 10:50 am

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo fully understands the importance of keeping the Bills tied to Buffalo for the long term with a new lease agreement. That’s why despite having to navigate the state’s challenging fiscal situation he remains optimistic that a new agreement will be reached in due time.

The Buffalo News covered the governor’s address at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center Thursday. Here’s a key excerpt from their story

The governor called himself a “committed partner in keeping the Bills here” but cautioned that the state’s fiscal picture means there will be no “blank check.”

“We’ve had significant financial problems for a lot of years, so we’re not a bank account here, either,” Cuomo said. “Having said that, we’ll do whatever we can, and I’m optimistic that it will work out.”

The Bills current lease with Erie County runs up to July of 2013.

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Gov. Cuomo on Bills

Posted by Chris Brown on January 25, 2012 – 5:25 pm

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was in Buffalo Wednesday and after his appearance spoke to the WNY media. He was asked about the efforts to secure a new lease agreement with the club and keeping the team in Buffalo for the long term. Here was his response.

“The Bills are very important not just to Western New York, but the entire state,” Cuomo said. “We want to keep the Bills here. I’m looking forward to being part of a cooperative effort to keep them here. Obviously money is tight. We all know that. The taxpayers are not in position to be shelling out more money. We’re going to great lengths to bring efficiencies to this state budget and I’ve cut the budget. But the Bills are important and I want to be a big part of keeping them here.”

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Bills CEO talks lease

Posted by Chris Brown on June 23, 2011 – 1:21 pm

Bills CEO Russ Brandon covered a wide range of topics during local media interviews this week including the prospects on a new lease agreement with Erie County. Here were Brandon’s comments regarding those developments with Erie County Executive Chris Collins.

“Chris (Collins) and I have had some conversations,” he said. “We are both going to be very focused with our organization and with the county moving forward, once we understand the CBA.  We are just going to sit back and see what happens when the CBA comes out.  There is no reason to reach or think or pretend that we know what is in the documents moving forward.  So, once we have a clear awareness of what the runway is with the CBA, we will sit down and have some meaningful discussions.”

So it sounds as if everything is in a holding pattern until a new Collective Bargaining Agreement provides a road map. The Bills current lease with Erie County expires in 2012.

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