Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The 49ers' Stadium Subsidies: Truth as a Casualty - Part II

Dear Santa Clarans,

After public comments on a motion before City Council, the Council gets the last word with their own comments.

There's no rebuttal to those - even if they contain distortions or even untrue statements.

Last Monday night, March 21st, Councilwoman Patricia Mahan claimed that the San Francisco 49ers paid for "half" of the infrastructure costs of the Tasman Drive/Centennial Way area. She made a similar claim at the Muslim Community Association debates of May 16th, 2010.

We believe that this claim is as untrue today as it was then. On page 3 of the original Training Center Escrow Agreement of February 12th, 1987, you will find that:
  • Santa Clara ALONE paid to build Centennial Way.
  • Santa Clara ALONE paid to connect all utilities up to the front steps of the 49ers' Training Center.

Extracts of that lease are here. A concise summary may be found here, too.

We're entitled to far more truth on this "sweetheart lease" than we got last Monday evening. If we can't get it from the dais of our own City Council on this issue, we're in serious trouble.

Santa Clara Plays Fair urges our fellow residents to ask questions - hard questions - when "stadium boosters" make unsupportable claims for the massive stadium subsidy.

Especially when they do so in City Council Chambers.

Thanks for all of your support,

Bill Bailey, Treasurer,
Santa Clara Plays Fair


Sunday, March 20, 2011

49ers' Stadium Subsidy Ticker: Secret Meetings and RDA Cash

Dear Santa Clarans,

In late April of 2007, the San Francisco 49ers demanded that our City Council sign the "Confidentiality Agreement" with the team. This agreement forced our Council and Agencies to take certain dealings with the 49ers into Closed Session, out of the view of Santa Clara residents. The Closed Sessions are indicated, but not detailed, in the "Action Summaries" here.

Also, over roughly that same interval, the Redevelopment Agency has paid RDA cash to consultants on everything from the Feasibility Study to the Term Sheet - and now for the Disposition and Development Agreement, or DDA. A summary of those payments and to whom they have been made is here.

Santa Clara Plays Fair continues to track both the count of the secret Council/49er meetings, and the cash paid for "Stadium Studies." As of this date:

88: Number of Closed Sessions, 49ers and Council, since 5/1/2007.

$2,800,000: Total of RDA cash spent on 49ers consultants since 4/3/2007.

We'll publish this ticker periodically to keep Santa Clarans informed of the costs of the 49ers' stadium subsidy - both in dollars and in transparency.

Best regards,
Bill Bailey, Treasurer, Santa Clara Plays Fair


Saturday, March 12, 2011

49ers' Stadium Subsidy: The "Naming Rights" Myth

Dear Santa Clarans,

Myth: "We're getting a Farmer's naming rights deal in Santa Clara!"

Please don't believe it.

The $700M Farmer's Insurance naming rights deal is for a football stadium not even built and with no NFL team. It's also likely that most of that money will go not toward stadium construction, but straight into the pockets of the millionaire NFL owner who can be persuaded to move in.

Farmer's Insurance
attached these strict conditions to the deal: The venue must book 50 events, total, every year, and each event must have see a minimum of 40,000 ticket-buyers.

That's a total fantasy for Santa Clara - even if Al Davis becomes
Jed York's tenant.

The real yardstick for a naming rights deal in Santa Clara is still Candlestick - where Monster Cable paid San Francisco a miserable $6M in four years.

Santa Clarans, please ask hard questions of
"stadium boosters" making reckless claims about naming rights for the 49ers here in Santa Clara.

The Stadium Authority here is going to need every penny it can get - and Los Angeles doesn't have a thing to do with Santa Clara.

Thanks for all of your support,
Bill Bailey, Treasurer,