Mulling the team’s location options after the 2016 season, San Diego Chargers Chairman Dean Spanos recently met with Mayor Kevin Faulconer, county Supervisor Ron Roberts and San Diego State University President Elliot Hirschman. The content and potential impacts of the reported meeting were not immediately clear.
“We have always treated our conversations with the city as confidential, and we’re going to stick to that policy now,” said Chargers special counsel Mark Fabiani, in an email sent to San Diego Business Journal.
The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that the meeting took place Dec. 22, and it was not known if progress was made on keeping the Chargers from leaving San Diego for Los Angeles. The meeting came as the Chargers recently leased a new headquarters and training facility in Costa Mesa, though the lease has an “out” clause if the team chooses to remain in San Diego.
The Chargers have until Jan. 15 to exercise an option, granted to the team by the NFL, to relocate to a new stadium in Inglewood, being built by Los Angeles Rams owner Stan Kroenke. Spanos has said publicly that he will not be announcing his decision until after the Chargers’ regular season concludes Jan. 1.
San Diego voters in November rejected the team’s proposed net 4 percent hike in city hotel taxes, which would have taken the total to 16.5 percent, intended to finance a $1.8 billion downtown stadium with convention facilities.
The Chargers have not commented formally on a proposal recently put forth by four San Diego City Council members, calling for the city to lease the current Qualcomm Stadium site in Mission Valley to the team for 99 years at a cost of $1 per year.
San Diego State University officials have previously supported plans for potential redevelopment of the current Qualcomm Stadium site, potentially for university sports programs, offices, or related facilities that could co-exist with San Diego civic amenities on the 166-acre site. Such development could either replace or supplement the Chargers’ presence at that location.