Will Voters Have enough Details to Decide Astrodomes' Fate? - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Will Voters Have enough Details to Decide Astrodomes' Fate?

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HOUSTON (FOX 26) -

When it opened in 1965 the Astrodome was known as the eighth wonder of the world.

The 400 thousand square foot dome that was home to the NFL's Houston Oilers and the MLB's Houston Astros was a huge source of pride for the Bayou City.

"Anybody that went to the games in the 60's, games in the 70's knew it was the eighth wonder of the world," said former Harris County Tax Assessor Paul Bettencourt.

The last time the dome was even used was in 2005 when it became a temporary home for thousands fleeing Katrina ravaged New Orleans.

For the last few years the big political hot potato has been should the dome stay or go.

This week The Sports Authority proposed turning the dome into a convention center.

"It's a retread of an idea," Bettencourt said. "But now it's the county's retread."

But county leaders aren't going to be the ones who ultimately decide if the dome is doomed or if it lives on in the 21st century.

You will.

"There are people who want to see it stay, there are people who want to see it bulldozed," said Precinct 4 County Commissioner Steve Radack.

Either way it's going to cost money, your money.

And just how much remains fuzzy.

This weeks' proposal turns the dome into a convention center for 193 million dollars.

Bettentcourt says voters need more specific info on the proposal.

"Exactly how it's used, who's going to book it, what it really looks like," Bettencourt said.

Voters have yet to get a straight answer about how much debt the dome has caused them .

Some estimates have taxpayers still owing some 28 million dollars for the dome.

"It will cost at least that much maybe twice as much to tear it down," Bettencourt said.

Whenever people wonder why we have the dome in the situation we have it it's because of a guy named Bud Adams," Radack said.

And if voters say yes to keeping it they can thank the former Oilers owner for their taxes going up.

"If this got on the ballot and voters approved it they would basically be voting themselves a tax increase,"said Radack.

 

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