First Arena’s New Owner
Chemung County is getting out of the hockey arena business, making way for a local businessman to take ownership of First Arena.
July 24, 2012
Horseheads (WENY) - Chemung County is getting out of the hockey arena business, making way for a local businessman to take ownership of First Arena. Tom Freeman owns First Air and several real estate companies. He reached an agreement with key bank to take ownership of first arena. The arena's former management still owns the jackals. New owner Tom Freeman has a long history with First Arena. He was the first businessman to invest $1 million dollars for the naming rights. The agreement transfers ownership from a non-profit, which puts the arena back on the tax rolls providing revenue to city schools. The arena is also fully insured and has an operational fire alarm system. The agreement also ends all litigation surrounding the arena. The County Executive Tom Santulli says he's excited about the move.
“The county was never interested in making any money in the deal from the foreclosure process. We were interested in reinvestment into the facility. The facility needs work both internally and externally and Tom has committed himself to do that.”
Right now, there's a three year agreement for the Jackals to stay in Elmira. Freeman is also in talks with Elmira College to play some home hockey games at the arena.