The Georgia World Congress Center Authority just got a bit more financial freedom toward the construction of an 800-room hotel in downtown Atlanta.
House Bill 264, sponsored by state Rep. Chuck Efstration, R-Dacula, would double the authority's ability to issue its own revenue bonds, upping the current $200 million cap to $400 million. The state Senate voted 45-9 Friday to approve the measure, which had already been OK'd by the House. The vote sends the bill to Gov. Nathan Deal for his signature.
If constructed, the hotel will be built on a portion of land currently home to the Georgia Dome. The dome closed this month to make way for the under-construction Mercedes-Benz Stadium, the new home of the Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta United. State Sen. P.K. Martin, R-Lawrenceville, who presented the bill on the floor Friday, said the hotel is currently estimated to cost at least $260 million to build.
The authority has said it needs the hotel to keep pace with other convention facilities around the country that are building lodging of their own.