WENY News - Local company wants to bring hockey to First Arena, IDA looking

Local company wants to bring hockey to First Arena, IDA looking for buyer

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ELMIRA (WENY) - The Chemung County IDA could be getting closer to getting someone in First Arena.

Friday morning, Robbie Nichols of CAN USA, spoke with the IDA. He expressed his interest in managing a hockey team, and leasing First Arena.  

Nichols said wants to bring in the Federal Hockey League.  He thinks it will do well in Elmira.  It also has a lower budget than the ECHL.  He also discussed additional events he would look into bringing in to First Arena.

Nichols said his deadline to move forward with the Federal Hockey League is at the end of the day Friday, and that's an extension of a previous deadline.

After a long executive session at the meeting, the IDA decided to reject CAN USA's offer.  Chemung County Executive Tom Santulli says its not financially possible for the IDA to operate the arena, while a team uses the facility.

Santulli says the IDA will make a counter-offer Friday afternoon, that will give him the option of purchasing the arena.  Santulli says Nichols has expressed interest in the past. 

Santulli says the offer to buy the area will be the same as the one given to previously interested parties: $3.5 million.

Brian Barrett withdrew from negotiations to purchase First Arena a few weeks ago. Read that story HERE.

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