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Politics

Chargers Fans Chant At NFL Stadium Meeting: 'No Way L.A.'

Mark Fabiani, right, the lawyer who is leading the San Diego Chargers' efforts to move to Los Angeles, speaks during a hearing at the Spreckels Theatre hosted by the NFL to gather comments from football fans on the possible relocation of the team, Oct. 28, 2015. Jay Bauman, an NFL representative, looks on at left.
Gregory Bull / Associated Press
Mark Fabiani, right, the lawyer who is leading the San Diego Chargers' efforts to move to Los Angeles, speaks during a hearing at the Spreckels Theatre hosted by the NFL to gather comments from football fans on the possible relocation of the team, Oct. 28, 2015. Jay Bauman, an NFL representative, looks on at left.

NFL execs visit San Diego, Oakland and St. Louis to let public sound off on possible team moves

Chargers Fans Chant At NFL Stadium Meeting: ‘No Way L.A.’
A public forum on the San Diego Chargers' possible move to L.A. got off to a rocky start when team special counsel Mark Fabiani drew boos from the audience. Fabiani responded by blaming city politics for the team's possible departure.

Written Comments

If you couldn't attend Wednesday night's forum on the Chargers' possible relocation to Los Angeles or you went and didn't get to speak, the NFL is accepting written comments via email.

Submit comments to sd.hearing@nfl.com through Nov. 13.

Mark Fabiani, the lawyer who is leading the San Diego Chargers' efforts to move to Los Angeles, was vigorously booed as he addressed the crowd at the beginning of a public hearing the NFL mandated as part of the relocation process.

"Why don't you tell the truth?" one fan yelled at Fabiani, who has criticized Mayor Kevin Faulconer's efforts to build a new stadium in Mission Valley to replace aging Qualcomm Stadium.

Eric Grubman, the NFL's point man on Los Angeles, had to step in and ask the crowd to calm down.

The Chargers and their rivals, the Oakland Raiders, have proposed a joint $1.7 billion stadium in Carson, an industrial suburb of L.A.

"It's good to see all of you here tonight," Fabiani, a one-time deputy mayor of Los Angeles, told the crowd Wednesday night at the Spreckels Theatre in downtown San Diego.

"That's a lie," one fan yelled.

Fabiani, who works for Chargers chairman Dean Spanos, blamed politicians, not the fans, for the team's stance. The Chargers walked away from negotiations with the city and county in mid-June. Fabiani said the team won't accept Faulconer's proposed $1.1 billion stadium because of a "flawed fatal EIR process."

Fabiani has criticized the city's environmental impact report. However, Gov. Jerry Brown recently approved an accelerated judicial review process for any lawsuits filed.

Faulconer's proposal caps public contributions at 32 percent and makes the team responsible for overruns. Fabiani has said the team wants at least a 60 percent public contribution.

City Councilman Scott Sherman gave an impassioned speech. He said Fabiani's claims that the city hasn't been able to accomplish anything "is the furthest thing from the truth."

Sherman said that while city leaders have come and gone, "the one constant is Mr. Fabiani's employment of the San Diego Chargers. He has been nothing but negative the whole time."

Loraine Ramirez holds a sign that says "Our Town, Our Team" during a hearing hosted at the Spreckels Theatre by the NFL to gather comments from football fans on the possible relocation of the San Diego Chargers to Los Angeles, Oct. 28, 2015.
Gregory Bull / Associated Press
Loraine Ramirez holds a sign that says "Our Town, Our Team" during a hearing hosted at the Spreckels Theatre by the NFL to gather comments from football fans on the possible relocation of the San Diego Chargers to Los Angeles, Oct. 28, 2015.

Before the start of the meeting, fans shouted, "No way L.A." They also sang the team's fight song "San Diego Super Chargers."

Once the three-hour hearing began, several longtime season ticket holders expressed their support for the team to remain in San Diego.

"You will rip a big part of me and San Diego if you take away the Chargers," season ticket holder Robert Lozano said.

Lozano said he grew up watching games in his slain father's Chargers jersey.

Several fans of other teams also voiced their support of the Chargers remaining in San Diego.

Andrew Hogan, founder of Bring Back the Los Angeles Rams, said, "We know the pain of losing a team and don't wish it on our friends in San Diego."

Hogan echoed many fans in attendance, saying there is no appetite for the San Diego Chargers in L.A.

San Diego Chargers fan Lonnie Corzo, wearing a team mask, listens during a hearing hosted by the NFL at the Spreckels Theatre to gather comments from football fans on the possible relocation of the team, Oct. 28, 2015.
Gregory Bull / Associated Press
San Diego Chargers fan Lonnie Corzo, wearing a team mask, listens during a hearing hosted by the NFL at the Spreckels Theatre to gather comments from football fans on the possible relocation of the team, Oct. 28, 2015.

The meeting in San Diego was the second of three being held by the NFL in cities in danger of losing their teams to the Los Angeles area. The first meeting was Tuesday in St. Louis, and the other will be Thursday in Oakland.

League officials said the purpose of the hearings is to provide an opportunity for fans and others in the community to ask questions and express their views directly to the NFL before decisions are made about potential relocation of one or more teams from a current market.

The NFL's 32 team owners are expected to decide early next year which franchises, if any, move to Los Angeles, which has not had an NFL team since 1994.

Four Things To Know About NFL Meeting On Chargers

Corrected: June 30, 2022 at 7:02 PM PDT
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story said Mayor Kevin Faulconer has proposed a $1.4 billion Chargers stadium. The story has been corrected to say a $1.1 billion stadium.
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