City council approves dome funding

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - The Birmingham City Council on Tuesday approved funding for a domed stadium in Birmingham, setting a groundbreaking for next week.

The council Tuesday morning approved releasing funding for the proposed BJCC expansion via the intial $8 million raised by the city in 2008.  The funding came from a doubling of the city's business license fees.

Tuesday's action allows the BJCC board to start the design phase of the facility.  Only one city councilor, Valerie Abbott, voted not to release the money, saying financial concerns weighed heavily on her mind.

"We're in a recession, we don't have a city budget because we think were $26 million dollars in the hole, in the red."  Abbott said.  "So why would we vote to design something we don't know we can afford to build?"

Mayor Larry Langford says this is a step the city made that will live on for years to come.

BJCC leaders say they will plan a groundbreaking ceremony soon, possibly as early as Tuesday, July 21.