CLEVELAND (AP) — Two former Cleveland politicians say ex-Browns owner Art Modell turned down the city’s offer to build a new stadium before he took his team to Baltimore.
Former Cleveland City Council President George Forbes tells The Plain Dealer that Modell was offered a new stadium when a taxpayer-supported ballpark was being built for the Indians and an arena was being developed for the NBA’s Cavaliers.
Forbes and former county commissioner Tim Hagan both say Modell rejected the idea.
Modell’s longtime spokesman tells The Plain Dealer that public leaders only said they would take care of him later.
Modell, who died last week, remains vilified by many Cleveland fans for moving his team to Baltimore after the 1995 season. He said he left because the city wouldn’t build a stadium.