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Arena deal heads for final approval

Both the King County and Seattle City Council's will vote next Monday on a proposed deal for a new Seattle arena. (AP image)

A new Seattle arena is one step closer to reality after a King County Council committee vote Tuesday to approve an agreement with developer Chris Hansen.

The budget committee made some minor changes to a deal previously approved by the Seattle City Council to move ahead with a proposal to help finance the $490 million dollar arena with up to $200 million in taxpayer-backed bonds.

Both councils have now scheduled votes for next Monday, Oct. 15.

Once approved, the arena must still pass a lengthy environmental review process and Hansen is required to secure an NBA franchise before he can break ground.

The final agreement calls for Hansen to establish a $40 million fund to study and pay for transportation improvements, along with up to $7 million for KeyArena.

Earlier this week, NBA commissioner David Stern said he was hopeful Seattle would have a new franchise within the next five years.

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