SBD/May 2, 2014/Facilities

Chargers Hope For Stadium Proposal By End Of Year Without Additional Taxpayer Dollars

The Chargers are hoping to finish a proposal by the end of the year that would "use public land at the sports arena, Qualcomm Stadium and downtown to generate revenue for a long-sought new venue without additional taxpayer dollars," according to a front-page piece by Mark Walker of the SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE. The team would "spend millions of dollars campaigning" for a November '16 ballot measure that "could pass with a simple majority vote because it’s not a tax increase requiring two-thirds voter approval." Chargers Special Counsel to the President Mark Fabiani said that Qualcomm and the sports arena site would be "ceded to a private owner for redevelopment, with a portion of resulting profits channeled to the Chargers" to pay about 65% of an estimated $1B downtown stadium. Qualcomm’s redevelopment would "include a riverfront park and open space." Fabiani said that the Chargers would put up $400M, including a $200M loan from the NFL. He added that the Chargers "remain open about which site will host the new stadium ... but prefer downtown because of available parking on Sundays, existing infrastructure and multiple transportation links." Fabiani noted that talks with San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s office are "going well ... and reflect what the Chargers see as a return to stability at City Hall." Walker reports the Chargers’ argument for public contribution to the project is "rooted in the way nearly all new NFL stadiums have been built in recent years, which Fabiani said average" 65% of the bill. Fabiani: "We can’t get public funds for this project, so we have to find another way to do this. If the Spanos family had to fund the entire cost, it would put the franchise at an immediate economic disadvantage in comparison to all the teams who got new stadiums built with taxpayer contributions" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 5/2).
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Facilities, San Diego Chargers, NFL

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