New California stadiums unlikely due to budget issues

Posted March 08, 2011 @ 10:41 a.m.
Posted By PFW staff

All three California teams are hoping to have new stadiums built, but the prospect of that happening with city, state or federal funds seems unlikely at this point.

Chargers owner Dean Spanos met with San Diego mayor Jerry Sanders on Monday to discuss a new facility to replace Qualcomm Stadium, which is 44 years old. The team released a statement on Monday evening.

"The meeting focused on the future of redevelopment and the proposed changes out of Sacramento, the future of the NFL's G3 stadium loan program after the League's Collective Bargaining negotiations are resolved, and financing alternatives in the event that the City and the Chargers do not ultimately have access to redevelopment funding and/or G3 funding," the statement said. 

"The Chargers and the Mayor's Office will continue to work together as these important issues are resolved."

Up the coast, California governor Jerry Brown told the San Francisco Chronicle that he doesn't want to use the state's redevelopment money to help either the Raiders or 49ers build new stadiums. Brown, the former mayor of Oakland, said the money would be better utilized assisting educational needs as opposed to entertainment. He mentioned that Raiders fans are still paying taxes on the refurbishment of Oakland Coliseum, even as the team tries to move out of that location.

"Oakland and Alameda County are spending $25 million a year, over a 20-year period, to repay a bond on a stadium that the owners now say may not be usable. That troubles me," Brown told the newspaper.

With his state in a budget crisis, Brown suggested team up with the local colleges and share venues.

"Use the ones over at Berkeley and Stanford — they are good stadiums," the governor said.

The way we see it

The construction of new stadiums is a major issue in the NFL's current labor negotiations, as owners want more assistance from the players in paying for these venues. All three California teams are looking to move out of their current homes, while the city of Los Angeles is considering building a new stadium while not even currently having a team. It seems, for the foreseeable future at least, the Chargers, Raiders and 49ers will all continue playing in their already-constructed locations.