Stadium Watch: Chargers turn in 100,000-plus signatures to San D - KUSI News - San Diego, CA

Stadium Watch: Chargers turn in 100,000-plus signatures to San Diego City Clerk

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SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — When the Chargers launched their signature drive in April to get their stadium initiative on the ballot, it was a huge media even with current and former players, Commissioner Roger Goodell and Chargers Chairman, Dean Spanos.

We had every reason to expect another big media event when the signatures were due at the City Clerk's Office Friday morning, but it was done quietly without notice.

It was a surprise because last week, KUSI's Steve Bosh was told this would be a media event, perhaps including Dean Spanos who would say a few words. But it was done under the radar.

At the spectacular public display when the team launched it's signature drive, there was every expectation of a repeat when the signatures would be turned in.

The Chargers chose to downplay the optics of another media event, leaving many to believe the team missed a republic relations opportunity to build momentum for persuading voters to pass their initiative.

"It's the Chargers, led by the Spanos family who for the most part are conservative in their business side, and how they handle all the ballyhoo the ballyhoo is saved for the field," said Jack Berkman of Strategic Communications.

Berkman said the team is simply making sure that the process is consistent with their strategy.

"I don't think the chargers necessarily believe from a political standpoint that this is a media event, I think this is a process event," he said.

"I don't know that a bunch of boxes on television is going to make any difference, the fact is they fulfilled the requirements in order to go to the next stage of their planning," Berkman added.

The Chargers turned in 110, 786 signatures in 83 boxes to the city clerk, who will verify that they are registered voters.

They were collected in just six weeks at a cost exceeding $1 million.

In a news released, Dean Spanos said the fact that we were able to collect more than 110 thousand signatures in that short time period demonstrates tremendous support in our community for a new, combined stadium-convention center expansion.

"I'm excited that the movement for a new stadium in San Diego is about to transition from signature collecting to campaigning," said stadium advocate, Dan McLellan.

The Chargers have said many times this is a business deal and there will be ample opportunity to sell this deal to the voters in the fall campaign.

Turning in signatures is part of it.

"It's not the end result its part of the process, and I think from a political standpoint I think they're smart in being committed to a business kind of approach to getting this done," Berkman said.

The Chargers press release said the team will continue working behind the scenes to win the support of community leaders and elected officials.

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