The Oakland Raiders have filed a formal application to relocate to Las Vegas, according to Steve Sisolak, the chairman of the Clark County (Nev.) Commission.
Sisolak made the announcement via Twitter, and the Raiders’ filing of the relocation application was confirmed by a person familiar with the NFL’s inner workings. The league later released a statement acknowledging receipt of the application.
The filing is merely a procedural step. Raiders owner Mark Davis has said for some time that he intends to move the franchise from Oakland to Vegas. The move still must be ratified by at least 24 of the league’s 32 owners. That vote apparently could come as soon as March, at the NFL’s annual meeting in Phoenix.
Owners once had concerns about the size of the Las Vegas market and the potential involvement of casino mogul Sheldon Adelson in the deal. But opposition seems to be melting away of late. A high-ranking official with one NFL team said recently that he expects the Raiders to end up in Vegas.
Davis has said the team would continue to play in Oakland while its new stadium in Las Vegas would be under construction.