Panthers propose to pay $82m over failed practice facility
ROCK HILL, S.C. (AP) :
Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper's real estate company has proposed to pay more than $82 million to creditors over an abandoned practice facility project in Rock Hill under a new plan proposed Thursday.
The deal would require approval from courts and creditors. The development of the Panthers' state-of-the-art $800 million practice facility -- which would have served as the team's new headquarters -- fell apart after highly-publicised disputes between Tepper and the City of Rock Hill and York County.
GT Real Estate Holdings, a Delaware limited liability company, announced it has filed a comprehensive plan of reorganisation in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware.
Under the terms of the plan, GTRE would resolve claims by paying $60.5 million in cash funded into a settlement trust for the benefit of contractors, subcontractors and general unsecured creditors, $21.1 million to York County and $20 million or more to the City of Rock Hill.
DT Sports Holding, LLC, a Tepper entity, previously funded $20 million in debtor-in-possession financing.
Tepper's real estate company, GTRE, filled for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on June 2. York County announced a few days later it was suing Tepper for at least $21 million.
Among Tepper's companies named in the York County lawsuit are DT Sports Holding, LLC, Appaloosa Management LP and Tepper Sports Holding, Inc. York County officials previously said they filed the lawsuit to protect the county and its taxpayers and recover damages caused by the defendants.
The complaint said Tepper and his companies took $21 million from a special penny sales tax intended to expand a road in York County and used the money for what the county's lawyers called a "failed vanity project."
Tepper is one of the NFL's richest owners. He invested more than $175 million into the half-built practice facility, which is located about 25 miles south of the team's current downtown stadium and headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, before construction shut down.