Details of Chargers' plan for Downtown San Diego stadium emerge
San Diego Chargers stadium deadline
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) - Wednesday - The San Diego Chargers' plan for a new downtown stadium leaked to the media Wednesday. The proposal includes plans to build a $1.8 billion stadium and convention center expansion near Petco Park. According to the leak, the plan would include a hotel tax increase from the current 12.5 percent to 16.5 percent that would affect only hotel guests. The Charger’s are hoping for a November vote which would need a 2/3 majority by citizens to pass.
3/13/16 5:50 p.m. - The city is still waiting to hear from the Chargers on what their plan is for a downtown stadium.
Will they sort piggy back on the citizen's initiative or do a separate initiative?
Meantime, Mayor Kevin Faulconer said there have been discussions with the team, but he didn't offer any details.
The Chargers had set a March 24 deadline to draft an initiative to give themselves sufficient time to gather signatures and complete the rest of the initiative process to get on the November ballot.
March 24 is not an official deadline but was set by the team to allow 60 days to gather about 90 thousand signatures.
If that deadline is missed, they will have fewer days to collect them and they would like more gathering time, not less.
Conversely, the deadline shortens the time to craft their own stadium plan and to decide if they want to partner with the citizens initiative which opens the door, but does not guarantee a downtown stadium.
Meantime on "Good Morning San Diego," Mayor Faulconer appreciated the complexities of the situation and the need to reach a compromise.
"It's important to bring everyone together, we're still trying to figure out what the art of the possible is here," he said.
The mayor said there are ongoing discussions with the Chargers as they work on their stadium plan and he cautioned again that any plan has to be fair to taxpayers.
"So as we're continuing discussions the question is how do we do that with a plan that makes sense financially, I mean that's my number one objective because we're ultimately going to go to the voters," Mayor Faulconer said.
The public is in the dark about how all of this is progressing, except for the mayor reiterating the ultimate goals.
"We're interacting. It's important that we grow our tourism economy, it's important that we keep our Chargers in San Diego right where they belong," he added.
Growing the tourism economy is why the mayor, the hoteliers and others backed Convention Center expansion at the waterfront. He's always stuck to that position, but included the caveat that he's open to alternatives.
He mentioned the Convention Center survey of last year, which cited Convention Center clients preferring contiguous expansion, not an annex in the East Village tied to a stadium.
"One of the reasons that we did the survey towards the end of last year, which is what are the benefits of contiguous and what is the benefits of non-contiguous, is that it showed benefits to both. What I'm gonna make sure is that any plan does two things, make sure we're growing our convention business," Faulconer said.
And keeping the team in San Diego.
The signature gathering time is important, which is why the law allows 180 days to get it done. The Chargers are hoping to do it in 60.