BALTIMORE, Md. - A long-term agreement between the Baltimore Orioles and the Maryland Stadium Authority to extend a lease at Camden Yards is moving forward for a vote by state officials next week, Gov. Wes Moore and the team have confirmed.
The agreement is slated to go before the Maryland Stadium Authority on Monday in Baltimore at the warehouse next to the ballpark. The state’s Board of Public Works, a three-member board chaired by the governor, also is scheduled to meet there later that day.
In a statement, Moore said the agreement "embodies the three core principles I laid out at the beginning of this process: this is a long-term deal that will keep baseball in Baltimore for all to enjoy, that puts all Maryland taxpayers at the top of mind, and that benefits the entire City of Baltimore."
"I know for many this process has been long, and the team that worked on securing this deal has done so diligently with the best interests of the taxpayer in mind," the governor, a Democrat, said. "The Orioles are a treasured part of the Baltimore community and I know I speak for all Marylanders when I say we are so excited to see the impact they will make on the City of Baltimore and across the state for years to come."
The Orioles confirmed the agreement in a statement.
"We appreciate the hard work that has gone into bringing this agreement down to the finish line, and we’re grateful to the Maryland Stadium Authority, the Governor’s team, and, of course, everyone here at the Orioles organization," the team said.
The Orioles’ lease at Camden Yards, which is owned by the state of Maryland, expires at the end of the year. In September, the team dramatically announced a new 30-year deal to stay at the ballpark — a message to that effect appeared on the scoreboard in the middle of a game the night the team clinched the AL East. The next day, the governor’s office released details of a memorandum of understanding involving Moore, the team and the Maryland Stadium Authority.
The September agreement included a 99-year development rights agreement for areas surrounding the ballpark, including the warehouse and Camden Station. That was a sticking point last week for Senate President Bill Ferguson, a Baltimore Democrat, whose district includes the stadium, and the Moore administration said it would work to address those concerns before moving forward.
Ferguson, who supports the new plan that was ironed out over the past week, said his concerns have been addressed with greater state oversight on future development.
"MSA is an independent board, so I don’t want to predispose where they land, but I think this is certainly a place that I was hoping that we would find, and I’m hopeful that the MSA board feels the same way," Ferguson said in an interview Friday.
The deal would extend the lease for 30 years, with an option to end it after 15 years if the team is not able to get approval from state officials for development plans next to the ballpark. The team would have until the end of 2027 to reach an agreement on redeveloping some land around stadium.
"We now know we have a long-term partner for at least 15 years in the stadium, and now we can have more fruitful conversations about whether and what to develop around the stadium," Ferguson said.
Last year, the state increased bond authorization for M&T Bank Stadium, home of the Baltimore Ravens, and Camden Yards. The measure allowed borrowing of up to $600 million for renovations at each stadium. The lease extension will enable access to the funds for Camden Yards. The Ravens already have started using funds for renovations.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.