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San Diego Taxpayer Group Wants Action On Stadium Site

Qualcomm Stadium during a game that pitted the San Diego Chargers against the...

Credit: Associated Press

Above: Qualcomm Stadium during a game that pitted the San Diego Chargers against the New York Jets, Oct. 5, 2014.

The San Diego County Taxpayers Association is pushing San Diego officials to do something about Qualcomm Stadium.

Qualcomm Stadium lost its most visible tenant when the Chargers bolted for Los Angeles last month. And the San Diego County Taxpayer's Association is reminding the city that the stadium is reportedly a drain on city finances.

The group is pushing city officials to act quickly to lift the financial burden from the city's books.

Photo by Guillermo Sevilla

Qualcomm Stadium and its parking lot sit empty on Jan. 23, 2017.

"Not taking action and kicking the bucket down the road is costly to taxpayers and then we all share that burden," said Haney Hong, president of the San Diego County Taxpayer’s Association.

San Diego still owes $50 million on a 20-year-old renovation project pushed by the Chargers and National Football League. The stadium also has a yearly operating deficit that is in the millions. Hong is not endorsing a specific plan to renovate the site, but he says doing nothing is too expensive.

"Whatever plan moves forward, I think it’s important that the taxpayers get fair market value for whatever moves forward with the land,” Hong said.

He worries that the city will use the $12.57 million lease buyout from the Chargers to fill a budget hole, instead of retiring the stadium debt.

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