won’t greatly affect Kansas City’s bid for the gathering, officials said Monday.
Last week Congress passed and sent to the White House a bill that trims $18 million from the GOP 2016 convention, and a similar $18 million from the Democrats’. President Barack Obama
is expected to sign it.
ButLinda Bond — who is raising money for Kansas City’s bid — said the $18 million would have gone to the Republican National Committee
for its convention expenses, and not to the host city.
“If it does anything to us, it maybe puts more pressure on us to make sure that we meet our goals, because the RNC is going to have to raise that money,” she said.
Bond and several other members of the Kansas City convention group met with The Star’s editorial board Monday.
Washington is expected to provide $50 million in security funding for each convention, money that is not affected by the new legislation.
The Kansas City committee still needs to raise between $50 million and $55 million on its own, Bond said. Roughly $15 million can be in-kind donations: free rent, reduced-cost telecommunications services, meeting room rents, and similar services.
The remaining $35 million to $40 million is cash (donations which are expected to be tax-deductible for the donor.) About half of that amount, she said, would come from Kansas City interests.
The money would go for building out the Sprint Center, as well as other requirements of the convention itself.
Fundraising is important. The GOP has told bidding cities that fundraising will be one of the key components in its decision — it’s about “money, money, money,” Bond said.
Tampa was $30 million short of its target just weeks before the 2012 convention, and had to call on supporters ofMitt Romney
to make up some of the difference.
The GOP doesn’t want to face that problem again, she said.
The committee would not say how much it has raised to date, or to identify any donors.
MayorSly James said some of the in-kind funding would come from city sources, including free rent at Bartle Hall
and some free parking. He also said City Hall, and other public sources, may have to provide some money for beautification and other costs.
He had no estimate of those expenses.
James said he expects the GOP to narrow its list of potential cities by the end of next week. He said he expects Kansas City to be on the narrower list, and to be visited by the site selection committee.