Opponents of a ballot measure that would partially fund construction of a stadium and convention center annex in downtown San Diego announced Tuesday that Councilman Scott Sherman and Councilman-elect Chris Ward are joining their campaign.
Sherman represents Mission Valley, home of the stadium where the Chargers now play.
“After the never-ending drama and bomb-throwing in 2015 as the Chargers organization attempted to leave San Diego, do we have enough trust to put the financial well-being of San Diego in their hands?” Sherman asked rhetorically. “Trust is an earned commodity and the Chargers haven’t earned the taxpayers’ trust.”
The East Village, the would-be site of the stadium project, will be represented by Ward beginning in December.
“Over the course of my campaign, I consistently opposed public funding of a football stadium and prioritized the needs of our neighborhoods,” Ward said. “On top of being a bad deal for taxpayers, Measure C disregards public process and smart land use planning. I stand with downtown residents and councilmembers on both sides of the aisle to ask San Diegans to vote No on Measure C.”
Measure C, if approved by two-thirds of voters in November, would raise San Diego’s hotel room tax to help pay for the project, which has an estimated price tag of $1.8 billion.
The levy is currently 10.5 percent, with a separate 2 percent fee that funds tourism marketing. Measure C would raise the tax to a total of 16.5 percent.
The Chargers and National Football League would kick in a combined $650 million toward the project.
Sherman and Ward joined Councilmen Chris Cate and David Alvarez in opposing the project.
Mayor Kevin Faulconer has not announced his position.
The proposition has gained the backing of San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce. President and CEO Jerry Sanders said at a news conference in July that the plan is the best way to keep the Chargers in San Diego and enhance the city’s convention industry.
— City News Service