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Council members want change before Redskins training camp deal renewal

RICHMOND, Va. -- Some Richmond City Council members said they are opposed to renewing the Washington Redskins training camp deal unless the team covers the cost of the facility and then some.

"It’s a legit consideration,” said Richmonder Jemail Lewis said. “That is something that the city should ask."

"If it’s not doing what it initially was intended to do, we need to do something about that," Temeka Turner said.

Richmond City Council members said residents have spoken when it comes to the future of the Washington Redskins in Richmond: they want a better deal.

While the majority of council members said they want the training camp to stay, they say the team foots the bill for the training center.

And they want the Redskins to the pay the operations cost during summer training camps each year.

"City tax payers shouldn`t be footing the bill for millionaires and billionaires," 9th District Councilman Michael Jones said.

Jones said the current deal is not fair for the city residents.

"I think it’s not a great proposition,” Jones argued. “Everything I`ve heard from people in the 9th District, everything I`ve read from comments, even on CBS 6, taxpayers don`t like this deal we`re in, they just don`t."

In the end, the Economic Development Authority (EDA) negotiates the deal between the city and the Redskins.

Council hopes their resolution will push the EDA to put the city first in renegotiation.

"We want to renegotiate a better deal or several of us are fine with the Redskins moving on if that’s what they choose to do," Jones said.

Even though some residents want a new deal, they do not necessarily want the Redskins to leave.

“I just worry because they are a very popular entity and another city may be wanting and willing to take them," Lewis said.

Turner agreed and said she would like them to stay.

"Richmond was a great city before the Redskins got here, Richmond is a great city with them here and Richmond will be a great city if they’re not," Jones said.

The city has until July 1 to negotiate the training camp extension and any new conditions involving the deal.

WTVR CBS 6 contacted the Redskins for comment, but they have not responded to our request.