The Rochester Rhinos are asking for the community's help to save the team's 2018 season. At a news conference on Wednesday, the Rhinos, citing "non-existent hotel tax revenue sharing, lagging sponsorships and season tickets sales." said they need $1.3 million.
The Rochester Rhinos are asking for the community's help to save the team's 2018 season.
At a news conference on Wednesday, the Rhinos, citing "non-existent hotel tax revenue sharing, lagging sponsorships and season tickets sales." said they need $1.3 million.
"At stake," the owners write in a news release, "is not only the storied franchise, but 400 jobs and a number of philanthropic and youth sports programs affiliated with the team."
The Rhinos say the team needs $1.3 million in support to keep going. The team wants a portion of the Monroe County Hotel Room Occupancy Tax Revenue. Right now, they say the team gets none. They are also asking for help from members of the community with ticket sales and sponsorships.
"There are critical needs that must be met in the next two weeks," co-owner Wendy Dworkin said in a statement. "We are a values-driven business that chooses to invest our dollars locally and this includes our relationship with the Rochester Rhinos."
The Rhinos say a decision must be made by November 30.
The announcement comes a day after the team told the media coach Bob Lilley was leaving the team for Pittsburgh and months after Rochester women's soccer team the Western New York Flash were sold and moved to North Carolina.
Statement from City of Rochester
"The City of Rochester remains supportive of our local professional soccer team and are hopeful the Rhinos organization will be successful in their community outreach campaign to solicit more support and sponsorships for the team,” said City of Rochester Communications Director James P. Smith. “The City government has invested $1.59 million dollars in operating and capital expense at the soccer stadium over the past two years and is continuing that investment. Achieving higher attendance levels and greater community support will undoubtedly alleviate continued financial pressure from both the team and City government, so we are hopeful the Rhinos will be successful in achieving both as they have outlined today.”
Statement from Monroe County
"Monroe County has an obligation to support the Rochester Red Wings and does so through Hotel-Motel Tax sharing because the County owns and operates Frontier Field. Capelli Stadium is not owned and operated by Monroe County. Monroe County is not prepared to divert taxpayer dollars to the Rhinos that would otherwise be invested in regional tourism assets, including local arts, museums, and parks."