The San Diego Chargers’ stadium project point man, Mark Fabiani, is making waves over stadium plans and funding as San Diego’s leadership considers whether to get behind putting a costly $400 million taxpayer subsidy for construction of a new Chargers stadium on the ballot, possibly in November 2016.
The San Diego Union-Tribune reports comments made by Fabiani during a recent radio appearance that could be interpreted as pressuring San Diego’s leadership to facilitate the stadium process or risk losing the team to a city like Los Angeles. Interest in a potential move to L.A. may not lie only with the Chargers. That U-T report not only insinuates interest from the Chargers organization, but also potential for the St. Louis Rams, whose owner recently bought 60 acres in the L.A. area.
Both teams are reported as officially denying interest in moving at all.
In San Diego, the potentially $1 billion stadium proposal described by the Union-Tribune would likely consist of $400 million of funding from the Spanos family, the team’s owners, along with investment partners, and an additional $200 million loan from the NFL. That would leave potentially $400 million to be financed by San Diego taxpayers.
If a stadium funding measure does make it to the ballot in November 2016, it would share the ballot not only with he next Presidential election, but also with Kevin Faulconer’s first shot at re-election as Mayor of San Diego. This measure would potentially affect the number and type of voters that hit the polls and thus election outcomes in more than just one or two races.
While mayor Faulconer’s office has been reluctant to comment without an official stadium proposal in hand, a 2009 U-T account recorded Mayor Faulconer’s statements when he was still a City Councilman and Jerry Sanders was San Diego’s mayor.
“It all depends on the details and whether it’s good for taxpayers and the downtown area,” Faulconer said. “I think people have an open mind about the potential of a Chargers stadium downtown, but the financing issues are going to be a very important driver on this.”