In Orange County, Scott Reid reports state lawmakers “expect legislation to be introduced next week that would give” AEG’s Farmers Field project in downtown L.A. “protection from protracted legal challenges under the California Environmental Quality Act.” AEG officials have “told legislators that the 1.7-million square foot stadium project will not proceed unless special protective legislation is passed before the end of the current legislative session next week.” But lawmakers and legislative staffers said that “even some stadium supporters such as” state Sen. Kevin de Leon are “frustrated with AEG officials, complaining that the company for months has ignored pleas for transparency in seeking legislative protection and that AEG avoid last-minute maneuvering” (ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 9/1).
UPPING THEIR ANTE: In Minneapolis, Rochelle Olson reports the Vikings are “considering paying more money than the team already pledged” for the construction of a proposed new stadium in Arden Hills and accepting a "fixed roof to limit the total cost.” Vikings VP/Public Affairs & Stadium Development Lester Bagley yesterday said that the team “could ‘potentially’ provide more than its currently offered $407 million toward the proposed Arden Hills stadium.” The Vikings had expressed an interest in building a retractable-roof stadium, but Bagley said, “We're trying to bring the cost down to make it work. It's got to work physically and financially" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 9/1).
START YOUR ENGINES: In Austin, Doolittle & Maher report the date of the city's inaugural F1 race “was confirmed Wednesday as Nov. 18, 2012.” The World Motorsport Council “unanimously ratified” the 20-race F1 calendar. The decision “had not been expected until this fall.” The Austin race would be the “penultimate race of the season and would fall back-to-back with the Brazilian Grand Prix, which is scheduled for Nov. 25.” The Univ. of Texas athletic department and F1 organizers “have agreed to cooperate on scheduling dates” (AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN, 9/1).
UP TO CODE? In Chicago, Jared Hopkins notes for the “first time in a decade, all the Wrigley rooftops surrounding the ballpark have been inspected by city health officials during the spring and summer.” An “uptick in inspections began in June" after an inquiry about the "frequency of health inspections at the 16 rooftops.” The “most recent round of inspections -- 11 rooftops in June, July and August -- saw all but one rooftop receive passing grades.” But “despite receiving passing grades," the 10 up-to-code rooftops still "averaged more than four violations, and almost all logged serious or critical violations” (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 9/1).