Sac City Council passes vote 7-2 to push arena proposal forward

There are days and then there are days. This is one of those days where normally I would be really upset that I cancelled all the work I just wrote out, but well, the Kings are staying in Sacramento. They are signing a 30 year lease in a new building that will keep them there for 30 years. (Or so it’s said.)

You know the votes so I’ll just recap them here:

Kevin Johnson (Mayor): Yes

Angelique Ashby (Vice Mayor and District 1): Yes

Sandy Sheedy (District 2): No

Rob Cohn (District 3): Yes

Rob Fong (District 4): Yes

Jay Scherirer (District 5): Yes

Kevin McCarty (District 6): Yes

Darrell  Fong (District 7): Yes

Bonnie Pannell (District 8): Yes

Here are the council member individual pages and district maps if such things matter to you. For instance, in case you care, I used to live in District 4 before I moved to Seattle.(It’s Midtown; not Land Park.)


Long story short, this has been a long time coming. 3 issues I think that are key moving forward:

1) Settlement of the existing debt on the parking garages as Bonnie Pannell brought up.

2) That the term sheet isn’t just the framework for a deal but also the basic outline for the completed deal

3) That a deal gets done within a reasonable time frame moving forward.

There is still a lot to be completed, and there is a lot to be done besides just a new SEC. There is a lot to be done period, and there’s nothing new about that.

Couple thoughts about the council meeting: I should watch them more often just for the hell of it. I mean some of those people would make Jerry Springer blush I swear. On the other hand, one of the owners of a DT bar talked about her support of a new arena. Now, I can’t say for sure because I didn’t see anything one way or the other, but she did not seem like a sports fan. She seemed like a business owner interested in drawing attention to her bar and having a consistent stream of people coming into it to make her business work.

Hmmm, sound familiar? That was probably the most interesting thing I heard all night but I heard quite a few interesting things.

It looks like Sacramento for a change will have A) transit leading into a major public facility like an arena for the first time in it’s history B) have a chance at developing a major infill project that city manager John Shirey mentioned was the largest infill project west of the Mississippi River and C) finally create a vibrant downtown corridor that offers a greater diversity and attitude than it currently does.

While an arena won’t solve all of the real problems Sacramento has, it’s one problem it had to solve or lose the Kings permanently (and likely all professional sports leagues until the financial climate dramatically changed). No matter what anyone says, it’s much easier to retain a sports team if you have one than if you do not have a sports team. Sacramento has done that up to this point.

Now come the devils, the details, and all that lay in between.

I want to throw out some names that really matter moving forward for Sacramento in any sense and in any way you slice it. John Shirey, the city manager, John Danberg the assistant City Manager, Dan Barrett of Barrett Sports Consulting (he was the lead negotiator for the city in the discussions with the Maloofs in Orlando) among others. If you did not read the Marcos Breton article about Shirey 3 weeks ago and his experience in Cinncinnati, please do. It’s rather important.

Here is Shirey on Grant Napear’s radio show yesterday. Here is the Lillis, Bizjak and Kasler joint column in the Bee that is in Wednesday’s paper.

Okay that’s it. Great day. Lots more to do. Got that? (I know it was hard to understand and all.)