Dear Santa Clarans,
From the Council/Staff/Advisory Committee Meeting of Thursday, September 12th, we first learned of the depths of the San Francisco 49ers' parking-space fiasco, thanks to a Santa Clara resident who attended. The "Feasibility Study of Facility Alternatives" for the City of Santa Clara Youth Soccer Park told us all that we needed to know:
The 49ers can't get enough parking spaces to accommodate the jammed traffic their games will cause - and by golly, someone's going to pay for that.
Namely, all of us, eh?
The 49ers and their stadium boosters were desperate to portray themselves as "partners" to our city - and they were quite happy to use the glow of a nearby youth athletic facility to help them in selling Measure Jed to Santa Clarans. But once the stadium was a lock based on those false claims of "synergy," what happened to the Youth Soccer Park was of no concern to those folks.
Essentially, "synergy" went out the window two years ago. The 49ers' attitude now is that the Youth Soccer Park has served its purpose. It must go.
If the 49ers' boosters want to make that claim, fine. But the expenses of moving the soccer park will range from $8,000,000 to $12,000,000.
What are we going to use for money?
Well, a misleading Facebook post by former Councilman Kevin Moore invites us to fall for the following line: That the 49ers themselves might just pay for the damage they're causing - out of the goodness of their hearts! Unfortunately, that latter part is completely untrue.
In fact, when I researched this last week, it turned out that the first part of Mr. Moore's claim is actually partly true and more so than he knows: The San Francisco 49ers are actually liable for precisely this relocation expense.
The proof of that lies in the Rezoning and Tentative Subdivision Map requests from the 49ers themselves which were authorized by Council vote on November 9th, 2010. Specifically, see RESOLUTION NO. 10-7785, the fourth item:
- On page 5-of-39, Part G tells us that we'll have: "...use that will be substantially equivalent to ones previously acquired for the public in that the public will continue to have access to the Youth Soccer Park Facility,... " [Emphasis is mine.]
- But on page 16-of-39, we then read in Item E1: "If relocation of an existing public facility...becomes necessary due to a conflict with the applicant's new improvements, then the cost of said relocation shall be borne by the applicant...." [Emphasis is mine.]
In other words, the 49ers have already agreed to cover the expense of evicting and relocating city property they think is just too close to their stadium.
If this is still true (I invite City Staff to supply corrections), then it's time for our Santa Clara City Council to step up and insist: The San Francisco 49ers are to either honor Item E1 above or they are to leave the City of Santa Clara Youth Soccer Park alone.
The 49ers are making the former Redevelopment Agency pay off like a slot machine. They'll collect $16,200,000 in property tax money from our Successor Agency's Oversight Board in 2014 alone**. The team can afford to do what they've promised.
And not out of the goodness of their hearts.
Thanks for your support,
William F. "Bill" Bailey, Treasurer,
Santa Clara Plays Fair.org
**Click here . Then open "Resolution 2013-07." The rakeoff to the 49ers, January and July of 2014, is shown in the rightmost column of the table on page 27-of-31.
Then, check out how much we'll end up paying the team after that...BB