The Tampa Bay Rays ownership can expect an official invitation soon from Hillsborough County.
Hillsborough Commissioners voted 5 to 2 Thursday to send a letter inviting the Rays organization to make a presentation on the team’s long-term interests, plans and goals to the board.
Commissioner Ken Hagan is calling for a regional discussion about the Rays future.
“But, I strongly believe that the first step is to find out if the Rays number one are willing to talk and secondly, what are their goals, what do they want?” Hagan said during the board’s discussion. “The next step is to have the regional discussion that I think we all agree needs to take place.”
Hillsborough Commissioners and Tampa officials are concerned the Rays will leave the region if they don't get a new ball field to replace Tropicana Field.
St. Petersburg's mayor has cautioned other cities and counties to not interfere with St. Petersburg’s contract with the Rays.