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City leases out mayor's box at Wells Fargo Center for $100K

Mayor Kenney has signed an agreement to lease the city's suite at the Wells Fargo Center for $100,000 annually, his office announced Wednesday.

Mayor Kenney has signed an agreement to lease the city's suite at the Wells Fargo Center for $100,000 annually, his office announced Wednesday.

The revenue, which will go to the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia, could be even higher.

Comcast Spectacor will pay the city a flat rate to be able to resell the mayor's suite for Flyers and Sixers games, no matter the profit or loss on its side, under the three-year agreement.

In addition, the venue will pay the city for use of the suite during concerts, family shows, and other non-Flyers and non-Sixers events.

"We're really excited to support the mayor's program," John Page, president of the Wells Fargo Complex, said.

During the mayoral campaign last year, Kenney said the city could generate about $1 million by selling seats in the mayor's suites at the Wells Fargo Center, Lincoln Financial Field, and Citizens Bank Park. As of Wednesday, the city had raised $47,000 by selling tickets for events at those venues.

The city is negotiating a deal similar to the Wells Fargo agreement with Lincoln Financial Field, city spokesman Mike Dunn said. "We hope to have those results to announce shortly," Dunn said.

A deal with Citizens Bank Park could be difficult because of bond agreements with the city, Dunn said.

Page said that Comcast Spectacor would try to sell the suite for a full season, but that it would more likely sell the suite package per event. The mayor's suite, a midlevel suite on the non-stage side, could rent for $1,500 to $5,000 per event, depending on the food and drinks package selected and the event itself, Page said. There are about 230 events throughout the year, about 140 to 160 of them non-Flyers and non-Sixers events.

The suite has 12 or 14 fixed seats and can accommodate between 18 and 21 people.

Use of the city's box seats at the sports centers has been controversial for some time. Mayor John F. Street drew fire for giving seats to the politically connected, including ward leaders, labor bosses, and family members. Mayor Michael A. Nutter started a program to hand out tickets to schoolchildren, nonprofits, and charities.

In his first six months in office, Kenney gave just over half his box tickets to children and the adults accompanying them from recreation centers, nonprofits, schools, and other groups.

"It's a hat trick of a deal: The city is spared the task of selling individual tickets itself to raise revenue, the Wells Fargo Center has more premium seats available, and most importantly, the children of Philadelphia will have more basic resources for schools," Kenney said in a statement. "This is a slam dunk."