Not everyone on same page ahead of NFL stadium presentations

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Wednesday marks the City of San Diego’s first official opportunity to present their plan to keep the Chargers to NFL team owners.

Along with Oakland and St. Louis, San Diego will get the chance to show NFL owners face-to-face not only why they should vote not to relocate their team but also how they’ll work to get a stadium done that meets both the Chargers’ and NFL’s modern standards.

"[The purpose of this meeting] is to show the NFL owners that once and for all the city is serious about getting something done," City Council Member Scott Sherman said Tuesday.

Sherman is one of many supporters who feel that the city– now armed with an Environmental Impact Report, shiny new stadium renderings, and the impressive turnout seen at last week’s NFL Town Hall meeting at Spreckel’s Theatre– is poised to show the NFL they have the actionable strategy to keep the Bolts in San Diego.

 "We have a plan, we have a mechanism, we have a location, we have the county involved, we have the governor involved," Sherman said. "Everything is ready to go to keep the Chargers here in San Diego." 

But not everyone in San Diego is on the same page about that plan. In fact, some don’t even believe there is one. 

"There is absolutely no plan," City Council Member David Alvarez said Tuesday on Good Morning San Diego in response to the city’s impending presentation. "The mayor asked for $2 million to complete an Environmental Impact Report that’s been completed; It has not been brought forward."

"Saying that the governor is supporting [The EIR] is absolutely nonsense because unless you actually bring that forward… it’s not a real plan." Alvarez said on Good Morning San Diego. 

Alvarez is one of many in a camp that believes the city’s expedited Environmental Impact Report as well as their Mission Valley stadium plan will not only fail in court, but also fail to impress NFL owners. 

Rather than taking the EIR forward and hoping it holds up down the road, Alvarez and others feel the plan most likely to succeed would instead be to put the stadium plan and EIR up to vote and petition a referendum to allow the courts to decide if the plan is legal or not at an earlier date.

Mark Fabiani, who represents Dean Spanos and the Chargers, has long agreed that the EIR will not hold up in court. By putting the report up to an earlier court ruling, Alvarez imagines the city would take that argument away from the Chargers and all but force them to come to the negotiating table.

In any case, Mayor Kevin Faulconer will soon be on a plane to New York, continuing the touring and campaigning that’s gotten the city this far and has many applauding his efforts.

"This is the first time to come up and really say ‘look, don’t pay attention to what you’ve been hearing. This is what we’re putting on the table,’" Sherman said.

For a city bent on keeping the Chargers but divided on exactly how they’ll do it, no one can argue that Wednesday, at the very least, presents a huge opportunity.

Presentations by all three cities will begin at the league’s committee meetings tomorrow morning in New York.

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