Assembly Speaker tours New Era Field, but status of new Bills stadium remains unclear

Don’t read into it.

Tuesday’s tour of New Era Field in Orchard Park was simply that and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie says discussing the future of the stadium had nothing to do with it.

“It wasn’t brought up,” he said. “It was just really to come to see a jewel of Western New York, the Bills team and the stadium where they play.”

Heastie is visiting the region as part of his annual trip to see parts of the state outside his New York City home. Assemblyman Pat Burke, D-Buffalo, suggested checking out the Buffalo Bills facility.

“There was really nothing more to it than this is an important site in my district and it was important to me to get the speaker out here and really see some of the improvements that have been made and some of the public investments that have been made here,” Burke said.

As for what kind of investment the Democratic majority in the Assembly might be willing to approve, either in terms of renovations or a new stadium, the speaker said it’s premature. He said he met with Bills ownership earlier this year and they haven’t asked for anything yet.

“There’s been no request,” Heastie said. “There’s been no ask so I don’t know what. It’s just like I’m answering a hypothetical but like I said, from an Assembly standpoint, we want to be supportive of the Bills.”

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