BALTIMORE -- Time has run out for the operators of the Grand Prix in Baltimore, according to the mayor's office.
City officials announced the termination of an agreement -- effective immediately -- with Baltimore Racing Development for "failing to honor terms of its Motorsports Development Agreement with the city."
The city continues to demand immediate payment of public debts owed. "Without an agreement, BRD cannot conduct the Baltimore Grand Prix in future years," according to the city's statement.
According to the mayor's office, the BRD owes to the city
$700,000 in reimbursement costs for city services; $487,971 in admissions and amusement taxes; a $250,000 racing event fee; and $50,862 owed to the Parking Authority of Baltimore City for parking at city-owned facilities during the Grand Prix. The city is also requesting an additional $250,000 for services that were to be provided by BRD in the Event Management Plan were not provided by BRD to the extent planned for and required.
"I hoped that BRD would restructure, recapitalize and begin to pay taxes and debts by the Dec. 31 deadline. BRD's corporate officers and managers have failed to take the appropriate steps to put the company on a sustainable path forward," Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said in a statement.
A response from the BRD was not immediately available. The mayor's office declined to comment further.
A plan outlined last week would have given former Goldman Sachs and Constellation Energy executive Felix J. Dawson leadership of BRD, which is $12 million in debt.
The city said it established clear terms in November to pay taxes and debts owed to the city and work to repay any debts to vendors. Documents indicate race organizers owe $3.1 million to vendors; $2.5 million to the Maryland Stadium Authority; $1.9 million to Baltimore City; $1.7 million in contractual payments; $600,000 to state economic development agencies; $600,000 to M&T Bank and $800,000 in loans from members.
In addition, court records reveal $1.2 million in lawsuits filed against the organizers.
"The Grand Prix generated $47 million in economic impact and proved valuable in terms of positive media exposure and civic pride for Baltimore's residents," Rawlings-Blake said. "The event, if conducted responsibly, has significant economic value to potential investors and the city this year and in future years."
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