Stadium Watch: New stadium opposition group steps forward
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — KUSI has learned another coalition is being formed to defeat the Chargers stadium initiative we expect will be on the ballot in November.
The Citizen’s Plan for San Diego, a competing stadium issue, will also likely qualify for the November ballot.
The Citizen’s Plan failed it’s random count by the registrar so now all of the 100,000-plus signatures collected have to be verified individually.
The deadline for the Chargers to turn in their signatures is Friday, June 10.
While we wait for both of these initiatives to qualify for the ballot, we also wait for Mayor Kevin Faulconer to take a position on which plan, if either, he may endorse.
His staff is analyzing the Chargers Initiative and it’s likely the mayor will comment by mid to late July.
It’s important to remember the Chargers have said without the mayor’s support, their plan has little chance with the voters.
In the meantime, the Chargers continue to collect signatures.
The new coalition is called, "No Downtown Stadium – jobs and streets first."
KUSI’s Steve Bosh got an email from the coalition, which mentioned April Boling, who worked on pension reform as being part of the group.
Mr. Bosh emailed Boling and got the following response:
"Yes, we are working on it and you should expect an announcement in the next week or two. There is so much not to like about this – the Chargers proposal."
Boling, and anti-tax groups, do not favor the Hotel Tax to pay for a stadium convention center annex, but they do support expansion at the Waterfront.
"What I care about is the return we’re going to be getting, and we get that from a contiguous convention center which is not what we are going to get in this plan," Boling said.
Our sources claim two general contractor associations have joined the coalition, as well as the open space group citizens coordinate for Century 3.
The building trade unions support the Chargers because their initiative has a project labor agreement.
But the coalition for fair employment in construction opposes it because it requires union only labor.
Then there’s the voters in the East Village who say a downtown stadium will wall of Barrio Logan and Sherman Heights from downtown. Architect Rob Quigley said those voters favor a tech center to bring good jobs to the East Village community.
"But second of all, and more important is the community is very excited about this idea of an innovation district," Quigley said.
While opposition seems to be growing the Chargers haven’t yet stated their case. Look for an expensive and aggressive campaign in the fall to persuade voters to keep the team in San Diego.