The council voted 7-2 in favor of a non-binding deal that would provide a $258 million public subsidy for the $448 million downtown arena.
"This is a good day for Sacramento," said Mayor Kevin Johnson. "We are on track to do something very historic."
The arena vote was a key development in a determined effort led by Johnson to find new ownership and new digs for the Kings. The Maloof family, the current owners of the Kings, have agreed to sell the franchise to Seattle interests; however Seattle would also need a new arena, and the sale has yet to be approved by the NBA.
The next step will come April 3 when a committee of NBA owners meets in New York to hear presentations from both cities ahead of a meeting by all NBA owners April 18-19.
The Sacramento Bee said opponents of the financing plan vowed Tuesday to continue their campaign against what they see as a giveaway that should be put up to a public vote.