On December 21, 2017, the West Villages Improvement District (the “District”), with the assistance of Hopping Green & Sams, P.A. attorneys Jonathan Johnson, Jere Earlywine, and Lindsay Whelan, issued two series of debt instruments to fund the construction of a $108 million spring training baseball facility and associated improvements (the “Facility”) which is to be constructed by the District within its boundaries and to be utilized by the Atlanta Braves. Specifically, the District issued its $13,995,000 West Villages Improvement District Florida State Sales Tax Payments Revenue Bonds (Atlanta Braves Spring Training Facility), Series 2017A (the “Series 2017A Bonds”) which are secured by state sales tax revenues distributed in accordance with section 288.11631, Florida Statutes. Hopping Green & Sams attorneys Jonathan Johnson and Lindsay Whelan additionally assisted the District with the certification of the project, and the subsequent approval of such funding, by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. Further, Hopping Green & Sams attorney Sarah Sandy served as disclosure counsel for the District relative to the issuance of its Series 2017A Bonds.
The District also issued its $27,500,000 West Villages Improvement District Senior Secured Notes, Series 2017B (Atlanta Braves Spring Training Facility) (the “Series 2017B Notes”) which are secured by annual payments made by the Atlanta Braves. Other sources of funding of the Facility were received from the Atlanta Braves organization, the City of North Port, Sarasota County, and the developer of the West Villages in a coordinated closing of the stakeholders held on December 21, 2017. Construction activities are currently underway and the Facility is planned to open in 2019.
The District is a local unit of special-purpose government that was established for the purpose of planning, financing, constructing, operating and/or maintaining public infrastructure improvements. The District contains approximately 12,409 acres and is located within the City of North Port and unincorporated Sarasota County. For additional information, please contact Jonathan Johnson, Jere Earlywine, Lindsay Whelan, or Sarah Sandy.