Civic Center notches a win by lending Rush a helping hand

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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA TV) -- What a difference a year -- and a few hundred thousand dollars -- makes. A year ago the Rapid City Rush was skating on very thin ice but today ... with a helping hand from the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center ... the team is looking at a much brighter future.Last year the minor league hockey franchise was teetering on bankruptcy.

The Civic Center management -- with the ultimate backing of Mayor Steve Allender -- decided on a unique plan.

The Civic center agreed to cover team losses up to 350 thousand dollars a year for three years in order to keep the center's anchor tenant in town.

The risky move appears to have paid off.

The team now has a new ownership structure and today inked a new five year lease with the Civic Center.

And the subsidies? They are a thing of the past.

"It's an ideal outcome," said Rushmore Plaza Civic Center board member Dan Kline. "It's absolutely the type of outcome we were hoping for when we entered into the agreement, the initial agreement with the Rush a year or so ago and I'd say where we ended up, the outcome of this is really, really strong."

And here's the final tally for the bailout: The Civic Center wrote checks to the team totaling $248,047.51 and forgave rent and other payments totaling an additional $95,623.55.

And again, going forward, the Civic Center has no further obligations to cover team shortfalls.