The Cincinnati Bengals have requested to own the naming rights to Paul Brown Stadium. Currently Hamilton County owns Paul Brown Stadium, the taxpayers and the county are still paying off the stadium. That has become a very contentious issue with the taxpayers. Now on top of that the Bengals want more from the county.
Currently the Cincinnati Bengals pay Hamilton County $5 million a year for the naming rights to the stadium. Bengals owner Mike Brown wanted to name the stadium after his late father, thus the name Paul Brown Stadium. That $5M a year goes towards paying off the stadium.
Paul Brown Stadium is in its 14th season as home to the Bengals. Over those 14 seasons there has never been a push from the organization for a stadium sponsor. Now though, Mike Brown and the Bengals front office want to control the naming rights and block out the county. The county would not entirely be left out in the cold, essentially the deal would be 70/30 but in the Bengals favor.
Hamilton County wants the rights for a litany of reasons, first it would help the county pay off the stadium. That is the main point that the county wants, having built two stadiums around the same time the county is looking to pay them off. Second, the tax payers, the people of Hamilton County paid for the stadium they are still paying for it, the county wants to remove that burden.
On top of asking the county for the naming rights for the stadium the Bengals also have requested that the county pays for a new video board for the stadium, a $10M video board. It is a bit hypocritical for the team to ask the county for a new video board when they are valued at around $1B in net worth. Now in the lease agreement for the stadium it is outlined in there that the county would pay for any improvements, now what is not know is if that includes upgrades or just replacements. Either way if the team wants the naming rights to the stadium they can also pay for their new video board.
This is an issue that will surely play out over the next few months, it does not appear that the city will back down on this. The Bengals have a lease in Cincinnati through 2027 so essentially the county controls what the team can do within Paul Brown. Now as fans you get to sit back and watch this play out, as well as their argument over the Banks.