SBD/February 16, 2011/Facilities

Leiweke Meets With Governor, Legislators Regarding Downtown L.A. Stadium

Leiweke briefs state leaders on plan for downtown L.A. stadium
Developers and supporters of a proposed football stadium in downtown L.A. met yesterday with California Gov. Jerry Brown and legislators "to show that the project is politically and financially viable," according to Patrick McGreevy of the L.A. TIMES. AEG President & CEO Tim Leiweke was "accompanied to his meetings with state officials by labor leaders and an executive from Farmers Insurance, which recently agreed to a $700-million naming-rights deal for the proposed 64,000-seat stadium." Officials who met with the delegation said that Leiweke "briefed the state leaders on the plan but did not make any legislative proposals for state help." But McGreevy noted "some lawmakers expect legislation that would grant the Los Angeles stadium the same immunity from environmental lawsuits that was granted to a competing stadium project in the City of Industry" (LATIMES.com, 2/15). In L.A., T.J. Simers writes Leiweke in the last few weeks "has come off sounding as arrogant as the NFL, and nobody does arrogance better than the NFL." Leiweke is "now making like the NFL and stomping on anyone who challenges or questions his downtown stadium plan," and "we are to believe whatever he says because he says so." On top of that, AEG Chair Philip Anschutz "doesn't deign to talk publicly." But it "gets no better out in the suburbs," where Majestic Realty Chair & CEO Ed Roski has allowed Majestic VP John Semcken "to spew venom" regarding their proposed stadium in City of Industry. Roski is "not very highly regarded in NFL circles, and Semcken's attacks have further damaged Roski's standing" (L.A. TIMES, 2/16).
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