Letter of intent to protect taxpayers from Boston Grand Prix costs

1 Comment

Boston-area taxpayers that fear they may get stuck paying for part of next September’s Grand Prix of Boston can rest a bit easier.

Grand Prix organizers, along with several Massachusetts state agencies and officials from the city of Boston on Friday signed a joint letter of intent that “outlines several taxpayer protections and agreements that all parties intend to negotiate over the next several months,” according to IndyCarBoston.com.

“We’re committed to bringing this world-class event to Boston,” Grand Prix of Boston CFO John Casey said in a media release. “And while we haven’t reached the finish line of the planning process just yet, we will continue to work in partnership with all of the stakeholders involved to host an event that works for residents, business and visitors alike.”

The agreements provide protection on a number of fronts for the Sept. 2-4 event including:

* All costs associated with the event will not include taxpayer monies.

* The Seaport area, which is where a significant part of the street race will be contested upon, will be returned to its pre-event condition.

* Provide regular opportunities for public input over the next eight-plus months to assure any public concerns are dealt with in a timely manner.

Among the state agencies that signed off on the letter of intent were the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, Massachusetts Convention Center Authority and the Massachusetts Port Authority.

The letter of intent is essentially an agreement that each party will live up to its obligations as part of hosting the inaugural IndyCar race, but also to serve as a check-off that all other parties are doing the same.

The agencies, the city and race organizers are currently working on developing detailed plans covering areas such as security, traffic and other elements to make the event run as smooth as possible, and with as little distraction or inconvenience, particularly to area residents around the track layout, as well.

“I am pleased that the City of Boston, Grand Prix and our other administration have made progress on the project and provided protections for taxpayers, Boston residents and our state,” Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Barker said in a statement.

Added Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh, “This agreement is a tangible step forward for the event and will protect our taxpayers, ensure that there is a strong community process and provide the highest level of cooperation among all the agencies involved.”

Click here to see a full version of the letter of intent.

Follow @JerryBonkowski