Phil Matier breaks down Oakland Athletics' $85 million offer to city on Coliseum site

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Longtime San Francisco Chronicle columnist and now ABC7 News political and Building a Better Bay Area contributor Phil Matier has details on a new offer by the Oakland Athletics to the city in order to reach a deal on the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum site and new ballpark.

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The A's are offering Oakland $85 million, plus the promise of affordable housing, labor-friendly contracts and the promise to build a ballpark in Oakland, if the city will sell them its half-share of the coliseum complex.

That's 112 acres of prime real estate located on the east side of Oakland, where the ballpark is now and where the Athletics currently play.

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In turn, they want the city to drop its lawsuit that has blocked the A's from buying the county's share of that same spread. They want to get control of the whole site.

It's a mega-million dollar project and one that's not without controversy because it's public land.

So Matier asked Oakland city councilmembers Noel Gallo and Dan Kalb, both supporters of the A's staying in Oakland, what they thought about this latest offer.

"I support the Oakland A's staying in the city of Oakland and certainly welcome the negotiation process. I think that we're in the right direction," Gallo said.

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"It's public land, so it should be used in a way that maximizes the needs for the public, for the residents of Oakland," Kalb said.

"We need each other. They need us to grow a team and we need them to help us grow a city and that's the bottom line," Gallo said.

There's also Major League Baseball at play. MLB is not happy with the lawsuit the city filed, saying it's disruptive and could lead to problems. They want it off the table by the middle of next month when the owners meet again.

Building a ballpark in Oakland has long been a tough issue. The latest idea is to build it on the waterfront at Howard Terminal. The A's say the need the Coliseum land development in order to pay for the privately-financed ballpark.

See Phil Matier's full report on the Oakland Athletics' offer here. His column appears in the San Francisco Chronicle on Wednesdays and Sundays.

See more stories and videos related to the Oakland Athletics here.

See more stories and videos about Building a Better Bay Area here.
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