Arena Public Information Meeting | Talking Stick Resort Arena | January 5, 2019


>>GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE. OH, ONE MORE TIME. GOOD MORNING.>>GOOD MORNING.>>NICE TO SEE YOU. HOW IS EVERYBODY DOING ON THIS
EARLY SATURDAY MORNING? EARLY FOR ME ANYWAY. WE ARE SO VERY GLAD TO HAVE YOU
ALL WITH US TODAY. I THINK IT’S GOING TO BE A
TERRIFIC CONVERSATION, AND THE CITY HAS WORKED VERY HARD TO
PROVIDE YOU WITH A LOT OF INFORMATION ABOUT WHAT THE
OPTIONS ARE RELATED TO THIS ARENA, SO WE’RE VERY, VERY PROUD
AND HAPPY TO HAVE YOU. I WANT TO DO A FEW INTRODUCTIONS
THIS MORNING. MY NAME IS JEANINE L’ECUYER. I OWN MY OWN COMPANY, JL
COMMUNICATIONS, AND ALSO WITH US TODAY ARE SOME IMPORTANT FOLKS
THAT YOU PROBABLY HAVE SEEN AND HEARD FROM BEFORE. FIRST AND FOREMOST, OUR MAYOR
AND THE COUNCILWOMAN FOR DISTRICT 1, MAYOR
THELDA WILLIAMS. WOULD YOU WAVE, MAYOR? THERE SHE IS. GOOD MORNING. [APPLAUSE] DISTRICT 3 COUNCILWOMAN
DEBRA STARK. [APPLAUSE] DEB IS GOING TO GIVE US A WAVE. I THINK SHE’S IN THE BACK OF THE
ROOM. GOOD MORNING. AND FROM DISTRICT 7, COUNCILMAN
MICHAEL NOWAKOWSKI. I THINK HE’S COMING UP FROM —
NO, HE’S HERE. [APPLAUSE] GOOD MORNING. I’M SO GLAD THAT YOU ALL ARE
HERE. WE ALSO HAVE CITY STAFF
LEADERSHIP, CITY MANAGER ED ZUERCHER IS WITH US TODAY. ED, A WAVE WOULD BE WONDERFUL. HE’S BACK IN THE BACK. [APPLAUSE] ASSISTANT CITY MANAGER MILTON
DOHONEY IS ALSO WITH US THIS MORNING. THANK YOU. MILTON IS OVER THIS WAY. OH, AND I WOULD BE REMISS IF I
LEFT OUT THE CITY’S COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR,
JULIE WATTERS. SHE AND HER TEAM AND ALONG WITH
THE TEAM FROM ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT HAVE PUT HOURS AND
HOURS OF WORK INTO THESE MEETINGS, SO WE THANK THEM FOR
THEIR HARD WORK AND THEIR PRESENCE HERE TODAY. WE HAVE SOME REPRESENTATIVES
FROM THE PHOENIX SUNS ALSO JOINING US THIS MORNING. JASON ROWLEY, THE PRESIDENT OF
THE SUNS, IS HERE WITH US TODAY. [APPLAUSE] GOOD MORNING, JASON. RALPH MARCHETTA, WHO IS THE
GENERAL MANAGER OF THIS FACILITY, IS WITH US THIS
MORNING. GOOD MORNING. [APPLAUSE] THANK YOU. MR. JIM PITMAN, THE CFO, ALSO
PRESIDENT OF THE MERCURY, IS HERE WITH US TODAY. GO GIRLS. [APPLAUSE] AND MARIA BAIER, THE SENIOR VP
OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS FOR THE SUNS IS ALSO WITH US THIS MORNING. THERE’S MARIA. GOOD MORNING. [APPLAUSE] WE THANK ALL OF YOU AND THEM
FOR BEING HERE TODAY. WE HAVE AN OFFICIAL SPANISH
TRANSLATOR WITH US TODAY; MS. CARMEN COTA IS OVER HERE. SHE’S IN A FIXED POSITION. SHE CAN’T MOVE AROUND THIS
MORNING, BUT SHE WILL BE PROVIDING TRANSLATION SERVICES,
INTERPRETIVE SERVICES. THERE ARE OTHER SPANISH SPEAKERS
IN THE AUDIENCE, IN THE STAFF GROUP HERE TODAY. IF YOU NEED HELP AT ANY TIME,
RAISE YOUR HAND. SOMEONE FROM CITY STAFF WILL BE
WITH YOU QUICKLY AND WILL HELP YOU. WE ALSO HAVE THE CITY’S CABLE TV
STATION HERE TODAY, PHXTV. WE’RE RECORDING EACH AND EVERY
ONE OF THESE MEETINGS, AND THEY WILL BE BROADCAST ON PHXTV AND
ON THE CITY’S YOUTUBE CHANNEL. SO IF YOU SHARE WITH A NEIGHBOR
THAT YOU WERE HERE AND YOU THINK THEY WOULD LIKE TO SEE IT FOR
THEMSELVES, IT WILL BE AVAILABLE VERY QUICKLY. OUR PURPOSE TODAY IS TO PROVIDE
PUBLIC INFORMATION ON THE PROPOSED RENOVATION OF THIS
CITY-OWNED ARENA. THE PHOENIX CITY COUNCIL
REQUESTED PUBLIC INPUT ON THE PROPOSAL, AND WE REALLY DO WANT
YOUR INPUT TODAY. THIS, I THINK, IS ONE OF THE
MOST IMPORTANT FUNCTIONS GOVERNMENT IN ACTION, WHERE WE
ACTIVELY SEEK AND RECORD YOUR THOUGHTS AND COMMENTS AND
VISIONS ON WHAT YOU SEE FOR THIS ARENA. AS YOU WALKED IN THE DOOR, YOU
WERE INVITED TO FILL OUT A COMMENT CARD. DID ANYBODY MISS THE COMMENT
CARDS? OKAY, GOOD. IF YOU FIND YOU NEED ONE LATER
OR YOU FILLED UP THE ONE YOU ALREADY HAVE, RAISE A HAND, AND
CITY STAFF WILL HELP YOU. WE HAVE TIME SET ASIDE THIS
MORNING FOR PUBLIC COMMENTS LATER IN THE MEDIA. SORRY, LATER IN THE MEETING. IF YOU DON’T WANT TO SPEAK, YOU
CAN STILL WRITE YOUR COMMENT ON THE CARD, AND WE WILL STILL
DOCUMENT. THEY’RE KEEPING VERY CAREFUL
RECORDS OF WHAT GOES ON HERE TODAY. SO IF YOU DID NOT FILL OUT A
CARD AND WANT TO, AGAIN, YOU MAY DO THAT AT ANY TIME. SO HERE IS HOW THINGS ARE GOING
TO GO THIS MORNING. WE’RE GOING TO BEGIN WITH A
PRESENTATION BY THE CITY OF PHOENIX’S COMMUNITY AND ECONOMIC
DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR, THAT’S A MOUTHFUL, CHRISTINE MACKAY, AND
SHE IS GOING TO PROVIDE AN OVERVIEW THAT INCLUDES THE
HISTORY OF THE BUILDING AND WHY IT WAS BUILT, THE ORIGINAL
INTENTION, THE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF THIS ARENA ON THE CITY, IT IS
SIGNIFICANT, THE RENOVATION NEEDS AND CHALLENGES, ALSO
SIGNIFICANT, AND HOW THE PROPOSED RENOVATION AGREEMENT
WORKS. AFTER THAT PRESENTATION, WE
WILL, AGAIN, OPEN UP THIS MEETING FOR PUBLIC COMMENT AND
QUESTIONS. WE’RE GOING TO WRAP UP THE
MEETING TODAY BY INVITING ALL OF YOU TO ATTEND SEVERAL
INFORMATION STATIONS THAT ARE OUT IN THE HALLWAY BEHIND THIS
ROOM. EACH TABLE IS STAFFED WITH FOLKS
FROM THE SUNS AND FROM THE CITY OF PHOENIX WHO WILL BE ABLE TO
ANSWER YOUR QUESTION. THIS IS ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY TO
EITHER SHARE COMMENTS OR ASK QUESTIONS. MOST OF ALL, WE WANT TO HEAR
YOUR FEEDBACK. IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION AND WE
DON’T HAVE THE ANSWER TO IT RIGHT AWAY, PLEASE FEEL
CONFIDENT THAT THAT QUESTION WILL BE RECORDED AND SOMEONE
WILL GET BACK TO YOU WITH THE ANSWER. SO OVERALL, NO QUESTIONS GO
UNANSWERED TODAY. FINALLY SOME LOGISTICS, FOR
THOSE WHO MAY NOT HAVE SPOTTED IT, ALTHOUGH IT’S QUITE
PROMINENT, THERE’S COFFEE, WATER, COOKIES, ANYTHING ELSE
THAT YOU MIGHT NEED TO KEEP YOUR ENERGY UP DURING THIS
CONVERSATION IS OUT IN THE HALLWAY. RESTROOMS ARE LOCATED OUT THIS
BACK DOOR HERE AND TO THE LEFT. NOW I’M VERY PLEASED TO
INTRODUCE THE CITY OF PHOENIX COMMUNITY AND ECONOMIC
DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR, CHRISTINE MACKAY, TO BEGIN OUR
PRESENTATION THIS MORNING. [APPLAUSE]>>GOOD MORNING. IS IT ON? EVERYBODY CAN HEAR ME, GREAT. AS JEANINE SAID, I’M
CHRIS MACKAY. I’M THE DIRECTOR OF COMMUNITY
AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FOR THE CITY OF PHOENIX, AND SHE’S
RIGHT, IMAGINE THOSE LITTLE COMMENT CARDS YOU HAVE TO WRITE
YOUR NAME ON, AND I HAVE TO PUT COMMUNITY AND ECONOMIC
DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR IN ALL THOSE LITTLE BOXES. IT’S A TOUGH, TOUGH THING TO DO. SO WE’RE EXCITED TO BE HERE WITH
YOU TODAY. JUST AS A BRIEF OVERVIEW AS TO
THE REASON THAT I’M HERE, MY TEAM’S RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE
CITY IS TO BRING JOBS AND INCREASE INCOMES IN THE CITY OF
PHOENIX, BRING NEW DEVELOPMENT AND BRING NEW REVENUE INTO THE
COMMUNITY. SO THAT’S WHAT MY TEAM DOES, ALL
DAY, EVERY DAY. WE WORK ON DOWNTOWN, WE WORK ON
ALL 13 EMPLOYMENT CORRIDORS, WHETHER IT’S NORTH PHOENIX, WEST
PHOENIX, WHETHER IT’S THE MARYVALE AREA OR AROUND THE
AIRPORT AREA, MY TEAM WORKS ON THAT EACH AND EVERY DAY. HERE TODAY, I’M GOING TO GIVE
YOU KIND OF AS JEANINE SAID, WE’RE GOING TO GO THROUGH THE
HISTORY OF THE FACILITY, THE FACILITY ITSELF, THE ORIGINAL
TRANSACTION, WHAT WE’RE LOOKING TOWARDS TODAY, AND THEN BREAK
DOWN STAFF’S RECOMMENDED PROPOSAL FOR CITY COUNCIL
CONSIDERATION FOR YOU TO UNDERSTAND. FOR THOSE OF YOU AT THE BACK,
THIS ISN’T SCHOOL. YOU CAN COME UP. THERE’S A LOT OF SEATS THAT ARE
UP HERE. PLEASE GO AHEAD. YOU’RE GOING TO BE ABLE TO SEE A
LOT BETTER, AND THIS COULD TAKE SOME TIME. SO I DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU, BUT
WHEN I STAND FOR A REALLY LONG PERIOD OF TIME, WE’VE GOT LOTS
AND LOTS OF SEATS, DOZENS, AT LEAST A DOZEN SEATS UP HERE, IF
ANYBODY WOULD LIKE TO COME. YOU WON’T OFFEND ME BY WALKING
AROUND WHILE I’M TALKING, I ABSOLUTELY PROMISE. THAT WAY YOU’LL JUST BE MORE
COMFORTABLE THROUGHOUT THE EVENT. AND EVERYBODY IN THE BACK CAN
HEAR ME OKAY? GREAT. USUALLY I’M THE ONE, SO I’VE GOT
THE MOM VOICE. YOU CAN HEAR ME ON THE FLOOR AT
CITY HALL, IF YOU’RE ON THE — I’M ON THE NORTH END. IF YOU’RE ON THE SOUTH END OF
THE BUILDING, YOU CAN HEAR MY VOICE, SO I TEND TO KEEP THE
MICROPHONE A LITTLE BIT AWAY. IF I DRIFT AWAY, MAKE SURE IT
GOES UP AGAIN. SO THANKS AGAIN FOR COMING
TODAY. WE ARE HERE, AND WE’LL GO AHEAD
AND KICK OFF OUR PRESENTATION. SO I’M GOING TO TOTALLY DATE
MYSELF. HOW MANY PEOPLE BESIDES ME IN
THE ROOM USED TO GO SEE THE SUNS AND CONCERTS AT THE VETERANS
MEMORIAL COLISEUM? OKAY, SO I WILL SHARE A SECRET
WITH YOU. THIS IS REALLY EMBARRASSING, AND
IF MY MOM IS WATCHING, SHE KNOWS THIS FAR BETTER THAN ANYBODY. MY VERY FIRST GROUNDING OF MY
LIFE HAPPENED IN THIS BUILDING. I WAS TOLD NOT TO GO SEE
AEROSMITH WHEN I WAS 14 YEARS OLD. I WENT. MY GIRLFRIEND’S CAR WOULD NOT
START WHEN WE CAME OUT. YOU KNOW, THERE IS SOMEBODY
WATCHING, TELLING YOU WHAT YOU’RE NOT SUPPOSED TO DO, AND I
HAD TO CALL MY MOM, AND SHE HAD TO DRIVE TO VETERANS MEMORIAL
COLISEUM AT MIDNIGHT TO PICK ME UP. LONGEST CAR RIDE OF MY LIFE
GOING HOME, I KID YOU NOT. SO THIS WAS WHERE THE ORIGINAL,
WHEN THIS BUILDING WAS ORIGINALLY BUILT, THIS WAS WHERE
THE SUNS PLAYED, AND THIS IS WHERE WE USED TO GO TO CONCERTS. THIS IS WHERE WE USED TO SEE
EVERYONE IN CONCERT. IN THE LATE 1980s, THIS BUILDING
BECAME PRETTY DATED. THIS BUILDING IS OWNED BY THE
STATE. IT’S NOT OWNED BY THE CITY. SO THE CITY COUNCIL AT THAT TIME
BEGAN HAVING CONVERSATIONS ABOUT BRINGING AN EVENTS VENUE INTO
DOWNTOWN PHOENIX. FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT REMEMBER
DOWNTOWN PHOENIX, I USED TO WORK HERE IN 1986 IN DOWNTOWN. IT WAS A PLACE THAT YOU GOT INTO
IN THE MORNING, YOU PARKED, AND YOU LEFT RIGHT AT 5:00. THE SUNS WERE STILL PLAYING IN
THE MADHOUSE ON MCDOWELL. THERE WERE NO CONCERTS. THERE WERE OLD WAREHOUSES, THE
BUILDING WE’RE SITTING TODAY. THERE WAS A JACK-IN-THE-BOX
WHERE CITY HALL IS TODAY, A COMPLETELY DIFFERENT DOWNTOWN. AT THAT TIME THE REVENUE
GENERATED OUT OF DOWNTOWN WAS ABOUT $57 MILLION ON AN ANNUAL
BASIS. SO THE CITY COUNCIL AT THAT TIME
WAS LOOKING FOR WAYS TO COMPLETELY REVITALIZE DOWNTOWN
AND BRING NEW DEVELOPMENT INTO DOWNTOWN. THEY HAD CONVERSATIONS WITH THE
SUNS AT THAT TIME AND MADE THE DETERMINATION IT WAS BEST TO
BRING A NEW ARENA INTO DOWNTOWN PHOENIX. IF WE LOOK AT THAT HISTORY,
LET’S START WITH 1989. JUST LIKE TODAY, OUR CITY
COUNCIL DID NOT WANT TO BURDEN OUR TAXPAYERS WITH THE
CONSTRUCTION OF A NEW FACILITY, SO THEY CREATED AN ORDINANCE,
WHICH IS A LAW, IT’S JUST LIKE I CAN DRIVE 65 MILES AN HOUR ON
THE FREEWAY, AND THAT ORDINANCE SAID THAT WHAT WOULD FUND THIS
BUILDING WOULD BE A TOURISM TAX. IT WOULD BE 1 PERCENT ON HOTEL
ROOMS AND 2 PERCENT ON RENTAL CARS. SO AS WE LOOK AT FAST-FORWARDING
TO TODAY, ABOUT 93 PERCENT OF OUR RENTAL CAR TAX COMES FROM
OUTSIDE THE STATE, AND 88 PERCENT OF OUR HOTEL ROOM TAX
COMES FROM OUTSIDE THE STATE. SO IT’S DOING EXACTLY WHAT OUR
CITY COUNCIL HAD INTENDED IT TO DO. FAST-FORWARD TO 1992, THE
BUILDING GOT BUILT, AND IT WAS PAID FOR BY THE SPORTS
FACILITIES FUND. A MORTGAGE WAS TAKEN OUT ON THE
BUILDING. IT’S NOT LIKE WE PAID CASH RIGHT
UPFRONT, BUT WE DID TAKE A MORTGAGE OUT ON THE BUILDING
THAT’S BEEN PAID BY THAT SPORTS FACILITIES FUND, OUR TOURISM
TAX, SINCE THE BEGINNING. THE ORIGINAL LEASE EXPIRES
IN 2032. AND WHEN I SAY THAT TO PEOPLE,
THEY LOOK AT ME LIKE THEN WHY ARE WE SITTING HERE? THIS IS 2019. WHY ARE WE SITTING HERE TODAY? WHEN THE LEASE WAS NEGOTIATED IN
1989, THERE IS WHAT’S CALLED AN OBSOLESCENCE CLAUSE IN THE
LEASE, AND IT SAYS THAT IF THE BUILDING COULD BE CONSIDERED
OBSOLETE, THAT OUR ANCHOR TENANT, THE SUNS, HAVE THE
ABILITY TO CALL IT BEING OBSOLETE, IT BEING OLD, IT BEING
NOT ABLE TO OPERATE AS WHAT IT NEEDS TO OPERATE, ON JULY 1st OF
2019, SIX MONTHS FROM NOW, WHICH IS WHY WE’RE HERE TALKING TODAY
ABOUT SOMETHING THAT DOESN’T EXPIRE UNTIL 2032. AND WHAT THAT CLAUSE SAYS IS IN
2022 THEY CAN ACTUALLY LEAVE THE BUILDING, SHOULD THAT BE THE
DETERMINATION THAT THIS IS NO LONGER A BUILDING THAT THEY CAN
PLAY IN. ONE OF THE THINGS I’VE FOUND
OVER THE LAST MONTH THAT I’VE BEEN TALKING TO PEOPLE ABOUT
THIS IS MOST PEOPLE DON’T REALIZE THIS IS A CITY-OWNED
BUILDING. THIS IS NOT OWNED BY THE SUNS. WE’RE NOT IN A PARTNERSHIP WITH
THE SUNS ON THE OWNERSHIP OF THE BUILDING. JUST LIKE A LIBRARY OR CITY HALL
OR ONE OF OUR PARKS OR ANY OF OUR CITY-OWNED FACILITIES, THIS
IS A CITY-OWNED FACILITY. WITH OR WITHOUT OUR ANCHOR
TENANT, WE OWN THIS BUILDING, THE ORIGINAL TRANSACTION THAT
TOOK PLACE TO BUILD THE BUILDING, AND ANY MODIFICATIONS
THAT HAVE HAPPENED TO THE BUILDING TO DATE. WE HAVE ABOUT $79 MILLION THAT’S
BEEN INVESTED BY THE CITY AND ABOUT $150 MILLION IN CAPITAL
INVESTMENT THAT’S BEEN MADE IN THE BUILDING BY OUR ANCHOR
TENANT, THE SUNS. IF WE LOOK HOW THE FACILITY HAS
BEEN FUNDED, IT’S BEEN FUNDED EXACTLY HOW CITY COUNCIL
ENVISIONED IT BEING FUNDED ORIGINALLY. SO THERE IS AN EXISTING TOURISM
TAX. AS I SAID, IT’S 2 PERCENT ON
RENTAL CARS AND 1 PERCENT ON HOTEL ROOMS. AND NOW, I STAY IN A HOTEL ROOM
EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE, WE’LL DO STAYCATIONS, WE’LL COME DOWN
HERE FOR A CONCERT AND I’LL END UP STAYING IN A HOTEL ROOM
INSTEAD OF DRIVING BACK HOME AGAIN. SO IN THAT INSTANCE, I DO PAY A
1 PERCENT SALES TAX THAT GOES INTO THAT BUILDING. AND I DO RENT A CAR. I WENT TO LAS VEGAS FOR
NEW YEAR’S EVE. I DID RENT A CAR, SO I DID PAY. 2 PERCENT OF MY RENTAL CAR TAX
WENT TO FUND THE BUILDING. BUT PRIMARILY, 93 PERCENT COMES
FROM OUTSIDE THE STATE ON RENTAL CARS AND 88 PERCENT OUTSIDE THE
STATE ON HOTEL ROOMS. SO THAT FUND IS CALLED OUR
SPORTS FACILITIES FUND. THE REVENUE THAT’S COLLECTED
FLOWS INTO THE SPORTS FACILITIES FUND. I ALWAYS THINK OF IT AS BUCKETS. THOSE BUCKETS, AS YOU LOOK, THAT
BUCKET PAYS THE MORTGAGE, THE DEBT SERVICE ON THE BUILDING, IT
ALSO PAYS FOR ANY CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS THAT WE HAVE THAT
HAVE GONE INTO THE BUILDING. AND EVEN IN THE WORST OF SB1070,
EVEN IN THE DEPTHS OF THE WORST OF THE RECESSION, IT ALWAYS HAD
ENOUGH MONEY TO PAY FOR THE MORTGAGE AND ANY NEEDED MAJOR
CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS THAT HAD TO HAPPEN ON THE BUILDING. AND WHAT THAT ALLOWS TO HAPPEN
IS EVENTS HAPPEN IN THE BUILDING. SO 30 PERCENT OF THE EVENTS THAT
HAPPEN IN THE BUILDING ARE THE PHOENIX SUNS. 70 PERCENT ARE NOT THE PHOENIX
SUNS. THEY’RE CONCERTS, THEY’RE OTHER
EVENTS, THEY’RE OTHER THINGS, THE MERCURY, THE RATTLERS, OTHER
THINGS THAT HAPPEN IN HERE. THOSE TICKET SALES, BEER SALES,
NACHO SALES, T-SHIRT SALES, ANYTHING THAT YOU BUY CREATES A
SALES TAX. THAT SALES TAX THEN GOES INTO
THE CITY OF PHOENIX’S GENERAL FUND, AND IT IS ABOUT
$12.8 MILLION ON AN ANNUAL BASIS. SO THAT GOES INTO THE GENERAL
FUND, WHICH THE CITY COUNCIL THEN APPROPRIATES EACH AND EVERY
YEAR AS PART OF THEIR ANNUAL BUDGET THAT PAYS FOR THINGS LIKE
PARKS AND STREETS AND POLICE AND FIRE AND OTHER THINGS THROUGHOUT
THE CITY. SO THIS REALLY ISN’T AN
EITHER/OR. THAT’S ONE OF THE THINGS I’VE
HEARD A LOT THIS LAST COUPLE OF WEEKS FROM OUR CITIZENS, THEY
THINK THAT IT’S ONE OR THE OTHER. IT’S NOT. IT’S BOTH. SO A TOURISM TAX PAYS FOR THE
BUILDING. THE BUILDING MAKES MONEY, AND
THAT MONEY FLOWS INTO THE CITY COFFERS THAT PAYS FOR ALL THE
SERVICES OUR CITIZENS ENJOY. THERE ARE 130 — MORE THAN 130
TICKETED EVENTS THAT HAPPEN IN THIS BUILDING EACH AND EVERY
YEAR. 30 PERCENT OF THOSE ARE THE
SUNS, BUT WHAT THAT MEANS IS EVERY THIRD DAY THERE’S A MAJOR
EVENT TAKING PLACE IN THIS BUILDING, AND THAT BRINGS PEOPLE
INTO DOWNTOWN PHOENIX. YOU KNOW, WE ALL GO BACK TO
REMEMBERING THE OLD DOWNTOWN PHOENIX, AND I WAS USUALLY THE
LAST CAR THAT LEFT DOWNTOWN PHOENIX AT ABOUT 5:15 AT NIGHT. NOW, I’VE WORKED FOR THE CITY
FOR ABOUT FIVE YEARS. WHEN I FIRST STARTED WORKING
HERE, IT WASN’T QUITE AS VIBRANT AND ACTIVE, AND MORE AND MORE
AND MORE ACTIVITY CONTINUES TO COME INTO DOWNTOWN PHOENIX. SO WE SEE CONCERTS, WE SEE
COMMUNITY EVENTS, WE SEE DISNEY ON ICE. I DATED MYSELF THE OTHER DAY, I
CALLED IT THE ICE CAPADES, AND PEOPLE TOLD ME THERE’S NO LONGER
THE ICE CAPADES. BUT THIS IS SOMETHING I THINK
THAT MOST PEOPLE DON’T KNOW ABOUT THIS BUILDING AND THEY
DON’T KNOW ABOUT OUR ANCHOR TENANT. SO WHILE WE HAVE 130 OR MORE
TICKETED EVENTS EACH AND EVERY YEAR IN THIS BUILDING, THERE’S
MORE THAN 200 NONPROFIT AND COMMUNITY EVENTS THAT TAKE PLACE
IN THE BUILDING. SO WHERE WE HAVE 41 SUNS
BASKETBALL GAMES THAT TAKE PLACE IN THE BUILDING, THERE’S MORE
THAN 80 YOUTH BASKETBALL GAMES THAT TAKE PLACE IN THE BUILDING
UNDER THE SUN’S LEADERSHIP AND TUTELAGE. WE SEE NONPROFIT EVENTS. YOU SEE ON THE BOTTOM
DIANNA TAURASI IN AN EVENT TO GET TENNIS SHOES DONATED, SHOES
DONATED FOR THE HOMELESS. YOU SEE THE KIDS THAT ARE
LEARNING BASKETBALL SKILLS AND LEADERSHIP SKILLS. THIS WAS ONE THING, AS WENT INTO
THIS, I REALLY DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT THIS BUILDING AND WAS REALLY
TOUCHED AND EXCITED TO LEARN HOW MUCH DOES ACTUALLY HAPPEN FOR
OUR PHILANTHROPY AND OUR NONPROFITS THAT ARE HERE IN THE
CITY OF PHOENIX. NOW, MY ROLE, OF COURSE, IS TO
DRIVE BUSINESS INTO THE COMMUNITY. I’VE GOT A TEAM THAT I WORK WITH
THAT DOES AN INCREDIBLE JOB ON MOVING NEW BUSINESS INTO THE
COMMUNITY. SO IN FRONT OF YOU, YOU SEE SOME
OF THE BUSINESSES HERE IN DOWNTOWN. YOU SEE THE CHURCHILL, YOU SEE
STATE 48, YOU PIZZERIA BIANCO, YOU SEE OTHER RESTAURANTS AND
THINGS THAT ARE DOWN HERE. ON THE NIGHT OF ACTIVITIES IN
THIS BUILDING, THOSE RESTAURANTS ARE ALIVE, THEY’RE VIBRANT, AND
THEY’RE PACKED. ON THE NIGHT OF NONEVENTS IN THE
BUILDING, THEY TEND TO BE A LITTLE MORE SEDATE. BUT THIS BUILDING IS RESPONSIBLE
FOR $182 MILLION ECONOMIC IMPACT EACH AND EVERY YEAR INTO THE
CITY OF PHOENIX. AND WHAT I MEAN BY ECONOMIC
IMPACT IS IT IS HOW MANY HOTEL ROOMS DOES IT DRIVE, HOW MUCH
RETAIL SPENDING, HOW MUCH RESTAURANT SPENDING, HOW MUCH
PARKING, HOW MANY THINGS PEOPLE BUY, BUT IT’S ALSO THE JOBS THAT
THIS BUILDING CREATES AND THE JOBS THAT THIS BUILDING
SUPPORTS. AS I SAID EARLIER, YOU SEE ABOUT
$12.8 MILLION, NEARLY $13 MILLION IN REVENUE,
SALES TAX REVENUE, THAT COMES OFF OF THIS BUILDING AND
GOES DIRECTLY INTO THE CITY’S GENERAL FUND TO SUPPORT THE
SERVICES OUR CITIZENS ENJOY. $14 MILLION GOES INTO THE STATE,
AND THAT’S NOT INCLUDING ABOUT 8 MILLION ADDITIONAL DOLLARS
FROM TICKET SALES THAT GOES INTO THE STATE AND COUNTY. AND WE LOOK AT JOBS. THAT’S THE SOLE REASON MY TEAM
EXISTS IS TO BRING JOBS INTO THE CITY. THERE ARE 380 FULL-TIME JOBS
THAT ARE IN THIS BUILDING, NOT INCLUDING PLAYERS, NOT INCLUDING
OTHERS, AND 700 PART-TIME JOBS THAT ARE IN THIS BUILDING. BUT NO OFFENSE TO OUR ANCHOR
TENANT, EVEN MORE IMPORTANTLY, THERE’S NEARLY 1,200 JOBS ACROSS
THE CITY OF PHOENIX IN NEARLY 60 COMPANIES THAT SUPPORT THIS
BUILDING. SO WHETHER IT’S A GARAGE ROLLUP
DOOR COMPANY THAT’S FIXING A DOOR, WHETHER IT’S AN AIR
CONDITIONING REPAIR, WHETHER IT’S PLUMBING REPAIR OR
JANITORIAL OR OTHER THINGS, THERE ARE NEARLY 1,200 JOBS IN
THIS CITY THAT ARE SUPPORTED BY THIS BUILDING. I’VE HEARD TOO, AND I’VE HEARD
IT EVEN THIS MORNING, WHY SHOULD TAXPAYER DOLLARS HAVE TO PAY FOR
THINGS THAT ARE GOING WRONG IN THE BUILDING? I THINK IT’S IMPORTANT TO NOTE,
IT’S NOT CITY OF PHOENIX PRIMARILY TAXPAYER DOLLARS THAT
ARE PAYING FOR THIS. THIS IS TOURISM DOLLARS THAT ARE
COMING OUTSIDE THE STATE OF ARIZONA. SO HOW MANY IN THIS ROOM ESCAPE
THE HEAT IN THE SUMMERTIME GOING TO SAN DIEGO OR NEWPORT OR
LOS ANGELES? NOBODY GOES? COME ON, LET’S BE HONEST. SO WHEN YOU LOOK AT THAT, IF YOU
GO TO NEW MEXICO, IF YOU GO TO COLORADO, IF YOU GO TO TEXAS, IF
YOU GO TO CONNECTICUT, IF YOU GO TO NEW YORK, THEY ALL HAVE A
TOURISM TAX, THEY ALL HAVE A HOTEL TAX, AND THAT TAX IS MEANT
TO FUND THEIR FACILITIES. IT’S MEANT TO FUND THEIR THINGS
THAT BRING TOURISTS INTO THEIR COMMUNITY, THAT POUR ECONOMIC
IMPACT INTO THAT COMMUNITY. SO WHEREVER WE GO, WHEN I GO TO
SAN DIEGO, I’M FUNDING THEIR FACILITIES BY THAT TOURISM TAX. WHEN THEY COME HERE TO ARIZONA
IN THE WINTERTIME OR FOR A CONVENTION, THEIR TAX IS FUNDING
OUR FACILITIES. AND THAT’S THE WAY THAT THEY’RE
VERY WISELY SET UP. WHEN YOU LOOK AT THE FACILITY
NEEDS, IT’S IMPORTANT AGAIN TO REMEMBER WE’RE THE LANDLORD OF
THIS BUILDING. WHETHER THE SUNS ARE HERE OR
NOT, WE OWN THIS BUILDING, AND OUR BUILDING IS 27 YEARS OLD. SO WHEN YOU LOOK AT YOUR ROOF AT
YOUR HOME, AS IT LEAKS THROUGH THE MONSOONS, AS IT TAKES A
BEATING THROUGH THE ARIZONA HEAT, YOU’LL SEE IT HAS HOLES. WE DO PATCHES ON IT, WE DO
REPAIRS ON IT. BUT AFTER 27 YEARS, WE KNOW WE
NEED A NEW ROOF. THE WHEN YOU LOOK AT YOUR
PLUMBING, YOUR PLUMBING GETS OLDER, YOU HAVE TO HAVE A
PLUMBER COME OUT, THEY SNAKE IT FOR YOU, THEY TELL YOU, HEY,
YOU’RE GOING TO NEED A MAJOR PLUMBING REPAIR, IT’S 25 YEARS
OLD. OUR TOILETS HAVE BEEN FLUSHED BY
40 MILLION PEOPLE. SO I HATE TO DO THIS BEFORE
BREAKFAST, BUT IF YOU LOOK UP AT THE UPPER LEFT-HAND PHOTO,
THAT’S AN ACTUAL PHOTO CLOGGED WHERE WE HAD TO DO A $4 MILLION
REPAIR JUST RECENTLY. IT NO LONGER COULD BE SNAKED. IT HAS HAD 40 MILLION PEOPLE
THAT HAVE BEEN UTILIZING OUR FACILITIES. WHEN YOU SEE THE PICTURES UP ON
THE UPPER LEFT, WE HAVE ESCALATORS THAT ARE REACHING THE
END OF LIFE. THEY ARE OLD. THEY’VE BEEN REPAIRED AND
REPAIRED AND REPAIRED. I WAS JUST IN LAS VEGAS FOR NEW
YEAR’S EVE, IT WAS SOMETHING THAT WE DECIDED TO GO DO, AND
ALMOST EVERY ONE OF THE ESCALATORS THAT TAKES YOU UP AND
ACROSS AND DOWN WAS BROKEN, SO IT WAS STAIRS, WHICH WAS A GOOD
THING BECAUSE YOU KNOW THE BUFFETS IN VEGAS, SO IT WAS GOOD
THAT I WAS GOING UP AND DOWN THE STAIRS. BUT THE ESCALATORS JUST REACH
END OF LIFE, AND THAT’S AN INTEGRAL PART OF THIS BUILDING
WHETHER WE’RE DOING CONCERTS OR EVENTS OR WHATEVER WE’RE DOING
IN THE BUILDING. ON THE BOTTOM RIGHT-HAND CORNER,
WHAT YOU SEE IS THE CONCOURSE. THE CONCOURSE WAS ORIGINALLY
BUILT FOR 1992. THE PINCH POINTS THAT HAPPENS,
IF YOU’VE BEEN HERE FOR AN EVENT, AND I’M STANDING OUT IN
FRONT OF THE LADIES’ ROOM AND SOMEBODY ELSE IS GETTING THEIR
SODA ACROSS THE WAY AND PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO PASS THROUGH TO
GET BACK TO THEIR SEATS, THERE’S TREMENDOUS PINCH POINTS AT THE
CURVES THAT ARE IN THAT AREA, AND THAT’S ANOTHER THING THAT
PHYSICALLY IN THE BUILDING NEEDS TO BE FIXED. WHEN WE LOOK AT THE TECHNOLOGY
IN 1992, YOU’LL REMEMBER 1992 AOL DIAL-UP, THE [SINGING] WHEN YOU WENT TO LOG ON, THAT’S
WHEN THIS BUILDING WAS BUILT. TECHNOLOGY CHANGES THAT HAVE
HAPPENED IN THE BUILDING, WHETHER IT’S FOR A SECURITY
STANDPOINT, WHETHER IT IS FOR TELECOMMUNICATIONS FOR OUR
WONDERFUL NEWSCASTERS THAT ARE HERE WITH US TODAY THAT NEED TO
BE ABLE TO BROADCAST OUT REAL STREAM, AS WE’VE ALL BECOME MORE
AND MORE USED TO, MY CELL PHONE IS OVER HERE, TO OUR IMMEDIATE
GRATIFICATION DEVICES, WE WANT TO WATCH THE GAME ON OUR PHONES,
WE WANT TO WATCH THE GAME IN A MANNER THAT WE CAN. WE WANT TO SEE THE CONCERT
STREAMING. WE WANT TO SEE WHAT WE SEE. WE WANT TO BE ABLE TO TWEET OUT
WHEN WE’RE SOMEPLACE AND SEND PICTURES. THE TELECOMMUNICATION IN THIS
BUILDING IS 1992, AND THAT’S A CHALLENGE. IF WE LOOK AT THE PROPOSED
TRANSACTION THAT STAFF IS RECOMMENDING FOR CITY COUNCIL
CONSIDERATION, YOU’LL REMEMBER I TOLD YOU IN THE BEGINNING THE
SUNS HAVE PUT ABOUT $150 MILLION INTO THIS BUILDING SO FAR, AND
WE’VE PUT $79 MILLION. WHAT WE ARE PROPOSING IS THE
CITY IN PHYSICAL INFRASTRUCTURE IN THIS BUILDING, IN PUBLIC
INFRASTRUCTURE IN THIS BUILDING, WOULD BE CAPPED AT $150 MILLION. IT WOULD BE PAID BY OUR SPORTS
FACILITIES FUND, BY OUR TOURISM TAX THAT’S ALWAYS PAID FOR THIS
BUILDING. IT PAID FOR THE MORTGAGE
ORIGINALLY, IT’S PAID FOR EVERYTHING THAT’S HAPPENED IN
THIS BUILDING. WE WOULD ADD $2 MILLION A YEAR
INTO OUR RESERVE AND REPLACEMENT FUND SO THAT OUT OF THAT TOURISM
TAX, THERE WOULD ALWAYS BE MONEY SET ASIDE TO COVER THINGS THAT
GO WRONG WITH THIS BUILDING. WE WOULD REMAIN THE LANDLORD. WE WOULD NOT GIVE UP OUR
POSITION ON BEING THE LANDLORD. WE WOULD REMAIN JUST AS WE HAVE
TODAY. THE SUNS WOULD PAY $80 MILLION
PLUS ANY OVERRUNS. AND FOR ANY OF YOU IN THIS
BUILDING THAT HAVE EVER DONE A COMMERCIAL CONSTRUCTION PROJECT,
YOU KNOW THERE’S GOING TO BE OVERRUNS. SO THEY WILL BE RESPONSIBLE FOR
ANY OVERRUNS. WHERE OURS PAY FOR PUBLIC
INFRASTRUCTURE, THEIRS ARE MORE FOCUSED ON OTHER THINGS LIKE THE
FAN EXPERIENCE, LIKE THE SUITES, LIKE OTHERS THAT OUR MONEY
DOESN’T COVER. THEY WOULD CONTINUE TO PAY US
RENT. SO TO DATE THEY HAVE PAID US
ABOUT $30 MILLION IN RENT. THE RENT, IT WOULD ACTUALLY GO
UP, THE RENT AND REVENUE OUT OF THIS BUILDING WOULD BE ESTIMATED
TO BE JUST OVER $60 MILLION OVER THE NEXT 15 YEARS, SO THEY WOULD
CONTINUE TO PAY US RENT FOR THE BUILDING, BUT IT WOULD ACTUALLY
INCREASE. THEY WOULD BE REQUIRED TO BUILD
A NEW PRACTICE FACILITY SOMEWHERE HERE IN PHOENIX, WHICH
IS ESTIMATED TO BE NORTH OF $25 MILLION. AND PEOPLE ASK, WELL, THEY
PRACTICE IN THE BUILDING TODAY. WHY IS IT IMPORTANT THAT THEY
BUILD A PRACTICE FACILITY OUTSIDE OF THIS BUILDING? SO WHEN YOU THINK ABOUT IT, THE
SUNS AND THE MERCURY AND THE RATTLERS, THEY ALL PRACTICE HERE
IN THIS BUILDING, WHICH MEANS THERE’S DAYS THAT WE CAN’T HAVE
OTHER EVENTS, OTHER PAYING EVENTS, OTHER COMMUNITY EVENTS
IN THIS BUILDING BECAUSE THEY’RE PRACTICING. BY MOVING THEIR PRACTICE OUTSIDE
THE BUILDING, IT ALLOWS US TO GENERATE MORE REVENUE OFF THE
BUILDING. AND THEN NUMBER TWO, THINGS NEED
TO BE CHANGED, THINGS THAT THE SUNS MONEY WOULD PAY FOR LIKE
MODIFYING THE LOCKER ROOMS AND THINGS LIKE THAT, IF YOU THINK
BACK TO 1992, THERE WERE NO WOMEN REFS IN 1992. SO THE LOCKER ROOMS NEED TO BE
UPDATED AND CHANGED TO ACCOMMODATE WOMEN REFEREES THAT
WE DIDN’T HAVE IN 1992. SO THEIR MONEY WOULD PAY FOR
THOSE TYPE OF THINGS. THEY WOULD REMAIN A TENANT UNTIL
2037, AND YOU’LL REMEMBER I SAID THEY CAN CLAIM THE BUILDING
BEING OBSOLETE AND LEAVE US IN 2022, BUT THEIR LEASE DOESN’T
CURRENTLY EXPIRE UNTIL 2032, SO THAT WOULD ADD AN ADDITIONAL
FIVE YEARS ONTO THEIR EXISTING LEASE. IT ALSO GIVES THEM AN ADDITIONAL
FIVE-YEAR OPTION TO STAY IN THE BUILDING UNTIL 2042. AND THEY WOULD CONTINUE AS THEY
HAVE SINCE DAY ONE IN THIS BUILDING TAKING OVER 100 PERCENT
OF THE OPERATIONS AND MAINTENANCE. THE SUNS HAVE PAID MORE THAN
$300 MILLION TO OPERATE THIS BUILDING IN THE 27 YEARS THAT
THEY’VE BEEN IN THE BUILDING. SO IF YOU LOOK AT OTHER ARENAS
AROUND THE COUNTRY, AND LET’S JUST USE THE GLENDALE ARENA AS
AN EXAMPLE, GLENDALE PAYS THEIR OPERATOR $5.6 MILLION A YEAR TO
OPERATE THEIR BUILDING FOR THEM, AND THEY PAY FOR THE MAINTENANCE
ON THE BUILDING. THE WAY THE CITY COUNCIL
STRUCTURED IT AND THE WAY OUR CITY COUNCIL HAS GIVEN US
GUIDANCE TODAY IS THAT OUR TENANT WOULD CONTINUE TO PAY ALL
OPERATIONS AND TAKE ON ALL OPERATIONAL RISK. AND WHAT I MEAN BY OPERATIONAL
RISK IS THEY PAY FOR THE JANITORS, THEY PAY FOR THE
TICKETERS, THEY PAY FOR THE PEOPLE THAT ARE MOPPING UP THE
FLOOR, THEY PAY FOR THE MINOR REPAIRS THAT ARE HAPPENING IN
THE BUILDING, THEY PAY FOR THE DAY-TO-DAY OPERATIONS THAT HAVE
HAPPENED IN THE BUILDING, WHICH HAS TOTALED MORE THAN
$300 MILLION TO DATE. AND FOR THOSE OPERATIONS, THE
CITY OF PHOENIX HAS PAID ZERO TO DATE. JUST A REMINDER OF OUR
HISTORICAL CAPITAL INVESTMENT FROM THE BEGINNING WITH THE
CITY, MOVING FORWARD, WE WOULD BE ABOUT 50/50. LET’S LOOK AT, THE OTHER THING
I’VE HAD A LOT OF TALKING TO FROM OUR CITIZENS IS WHAT ARE
OUR OTHER OPTIONS. AND I CAN TELL YOU THAT CITY
STAFF HAS NOT JUST AUTOMATICALLY SAID THIS IS WHAT WE SHOULD DO. WE’VE LOOKED AT OTHER OPTIONS,
AND WE’LL WALK YOU THROUGH THOSE RIGHT NOW. SO WHAT HAPPENS IF THE SUNS
DECIDE TO CLAIM THE BUILDING IS OBSOLETE? IT COULD. WHAT WOULD END UP HAPPENING IS
AN ARBITRATOR COMES IN, AND THAT’S REQUIRED BY THE CONTRACT. IT’S A VERY PRESCRIPTIVE
CONTRACT THAT WAS EXECUTED IN 1989. THERE IS NO WIGGLE ROOM. THERE IS AN ACTIVITY THAT
HAPPENS ON JULY 1st WHERE THE SUNS SAY THE BUILDING
IS OBSOLETE. AN INDEPENDENT ARBITRATOR COMES
IN, AND THEY LOOK AT THE FACILITY, THEY REVIEW THE
FACILITY, THEY SPEND UP TO A YEAR LOOKING AT ALL THE THINGS
THAT COULD BE WRONG WITH THE BUILDING. THAT ARBITRATOR COULD COME BACK
AND TELL US WHAT’S WRONG WITH THE BUILDING, AND AS WE WOULD
KNOW WHAT WAS WRONG, WE WOULD WORK WITH THEM THROUGH THAT. AT THAT POINT IT IS 100 PERCENT
THE CITY’S RESPONSIBILITY TO PAY FOR WHATEVER IS FOUND TO BE
OBSOLETE OR WRONG WITH THE BUILDING. THERE IS NO PARTNERSHIP AT THAT
TIME. IT’S UP TO THE COUNCIL, THE
COUNCIL COULD ABSOLUTELY SAY, YOU KNOW WHAT, WE DON’T WANT TO
MAKE THOSE IMPROVEMENTS. AT THAT POINT THE SUNS COULD
LEAVE AND SAY WE ARE LEAVING IN 2022. THE CITY WOULD BE THEN LEFT WITH
A BUILDING. WHEN WE LOOK AT IT, PEOPLE SAY,
WELL, WHY DOESN’T THE CITY JUST OPERATE IT AS AN EVENT CENTER? WELL, I WORK WITH AN INCREDIBLY
TALENTED TEAM, AND TRUST ME, RUNNING AN EVENT CENTER IS NOT
THEIR AREA OF SPECIALTY. WE WOULD HAVE TO PAY SOMEONE
FROM THE OUTSIDE TO PROGRAM IT, TO BRING IN ALL THE CONCERTS
THAT HAPPEN HERE AND ALL THE PROGRAMMING THAT HAPPENS HERE
THAT THE SUNS DO FOR US TODAY FOR FREE. SO NOW MUCH LIKE THE GLENDALE
ARENA, WE WOULD HAVE TO PAY FOR AN OPERATOR TO COME INTO THE
BUILDING, WE WOULD HAVE TO NOW TAKE ON ALL OPERATIONAL RISK,
ALL MAINTENANCE OF THE BUILDING, AND EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENS IN
THE BUILDING, BESIDES PAYING FOR THE IMPROVEMENTS, THE NEEDED
IMPROVEMENTS. SO IF YOU LOOK AT IT AS
OPERATING IT AS AN EVENT CENTER, WE WOULD STILL NEED TO FIX THE
THINGS THAT ARE WRONG WITH THE BUILDING TO THE TUNE OF ABOUT
$130 TO $180 MILLION. JUST BECAUSE THE SUNS ARE HERE,
WE STILL HAVE AN OLD PIECE OF REAL ESTATE WITH THINGS THAT
MOST LIKELY NEED TO BE REPAIRED. OTHERS HAVE SAID TO US, WHY
DON’T YOU JUST SELL THE BUILDING? SELL IT TO SOMEONE AS AN EVENT
CENTER AND LET THEM OPERATE IT. WE’VE LOOKED AT THAT. WE’VE LOOKED AT WHAT THAT WOULD
LOOK LIKE. THAT’S HAPPENED TO A NUMBER OF
ARENAS AROUND THE COUNTRY. MOST RECENTLY, IF YOU LOOK —
NOT MOST RECENTLY, BUT OTHERS LIKE MIAMI, MIAMI SOLD THEIR
EVENT CENTER TO — THEIR ARENA TO A PRIVATE SECTOR ENTITY WHO
TRIED TO MAKE IT WORK FOR A NUMBER OF YEARS. THEY ENDED UP HAVING TO DEMOLISH
IT. HOUSTON SOLD THEIRS TO A MAJOR
CHURCH. JOEL OSTEEN OPERATES OUT OF THE
HOUSTON ARENA AS A MEGACHURCH. THEY’RE NOT FACILITIES —
THERE’S SUCH A SMALL HANDFUL OF GROUPS THAT CAN RUN A
550,000-SQUARE-FOOT BUILDING. NOT A REALLY GOOD OPTION FOR US. AND ALSO, IF WE SELL THE
BUILDING, WE STOP PARTICIPATING IN THAT REVENUE. RIGHT NOW WE SEE 10 PERCENT OF
THE PROFITS THAT COME OFF THE BUILDING. THE OTHER THING THAT I HAVE
HEARD FROM IS YOU KNOW WHAT YOU SHOULD DO, DOWNTOWN IS ON FIRE,
YOU SHOULD JUST DEMOLISH IT AND LET THE PROPERTY DEVELOP WITH
THE PRIVATE SECTOR. AND AS YOU LOOK AT THAT, I KIND
OF WANT TO WALK YOU THROUGH WHAT THAT COULD LOOK LIKE BECAUSE
THAT’S CERTAINLY AN OPTION AS WELL. WHAT YOU SEE IN FRONT OF YOU
HERE, THE BIG YELLOW BOX, THAT’S THE ARENA SITE. IT’S APPROXIMATELY NINE ACRES. THE SMALL YELLOW BOX IS THE
CITYSCAPE HIGH-RISES, AND THAT’S JUST OVER A CITY BLOCK, SO THAT
A CITY BLOCK IS ABOUT TWO ACRES. SO IF YOU LOOK AT THAT, YOU
COULD FIT JUST OVER THREE TIMES THE SIZE OF CITYSCAPE ON THIS
ARENA BLOCK, WHICH SOUNDS GREAT, BUT THE CITY OF PHOENIX, IF YOU
GO BACK HISTORICALLY TO THE 1950s AND COME FORWARD, WE
DEVELOP A CITY BLOCK ABOUT EVERY DECADE. SO WHAT THAT SAYS IS THAT IT
WOULD TAKE US ABOUT 30 YEARS TO FULLY DEVELOP THIS SITE AND GET
IT BACK INTO FULL PRODUCTION. ON TOP OF THAT, WHEN YOU LOOK AT
THAT FULL CITY BLOCK AS AN EXAMPLE, IT MAKES ABOUT 20
PERCENT OF THE REVENUE FOR THE CITY THAT THIS ARENA PUTS IN THE
CITY’S — THROUGH SALES TAX AND OTHER REVENUES INTO THE CITY’S
BUDGET. SO EVEN IF YOU BUILT THREE TIMES
THE SIZE, YOU WOULD ONLY BE COLLECTING 60 PERCENT OF THE
REVENUE THAT YOU COLLECT ON THIS BUILDING TODAY, 30 YEARS FROM
NOW. SO JUST IN SUMMARY, AND THEN
I’LL ASK THE EXPERTS TO COME UP AND WE’LL BE READY TO FIELD ANY
QUESTIONS YOU MIGHT HAVE. THIS IS A CITY-OWNED BUILDING. WITH OR WITHOUT YOU OUR ANCHOR
TENANT, WE DO OWN THIS REAL ESTATE. IT IS PAID FOR BY TOURISM, AND
NOTHING IS GOING TO CHANGE FROM THAT. THERE IS NO ADDITIONAL TAXES,
THERE ARE NO NEW TAXES, THERE’S NO CHANGE IN OUR EXISTING
TOURISM TAX. JUST LIKE THIS HAS ALWAYS FUNDED
THE BUILDING, THE EXISTING TOURISM TAX WOULD CONTINUE TO
FUND THE BUILDING. THERE’S $182 MILLION IN ECONOMIC
IMPACT ANNUALLY THAT COMES OUT OF THE BUILDING. ABOUT $13 MILLION A YEAR GOES
INTO THE CITY’S GENERAL FUND TO PAY FOR SERVICES, $14 MILLION
TO THE STATE, AND ABOUT 1500 FULL-TIME JOBS ARE FROM
THIS BUILDING, 700 ADDITIONAL PART-TIME JOBS. AND AS I SAID AGAIN, ABSOLUTELY
NO CHANGE IN EXACTLY HOW THIS BUILDING HAS BEEN FUNDED SINCE
1989. WHAT I WOULD LIKE TO DO NOW IS
TO TURN IT BACK OVER TO JEANINE, WHO IS GOING TO BRING UP OUR
EXPERTS, AND WE’LL BE READY TO ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS YOU MIGHT
HAVE. THANKS FOR LETTING ME TALK WITH
YOU THIS MORNING.>>THANK YOU, CHRIS. [APPLAUSE] THAT WAS A LOT OF TERRIFIC
INFORMATION AND GREATLY APPRECIATED. NOW COMES TO THE FUN PART. WE’RE GOING TO OPEN THE MEETING
FOR PUBLIC COMMENTS AND QUESTIONS. AND JUST A WRY MINDER THAT ALL
THE COMMENTS WILL BE RECORDED AS PART OF THE OFFICIAL RECORD FOR
THIS MEETING. SO IF YOU FILLED OUT A CARD, IT
DOESN’T MATTER WHETHER YOU CHECKED THE BOX THAT YOU WANT TO
SPEAK OR NOT, EVERY COMMENT IS GOING TO BE RECORDED AS PART OF
THIS MEETING. WE DO HAVE CARMEN HERE FOR FOLKS
WHO NEED A LITTLE HELP OR WOULD LIKE TO HEAR THE MEETING IN
SPANISH. I ALSO WANT TO POINT OUT ROBIN,
ARE YOU — ROBIN IS IN THE BACK OF THE ROOM BACK THERE. IF YOU NEED EXTRA ASSISTANCE FOR
ANY REASON, PLEASE SEE ROBIN, AND SHE WILL HELP YOU. WE ALSO HAVE A COURT REPORTER
PRESENT. IF YOU WANT YOUR COMMENT
RECORDED FOR THE OFFICIAL RECORD IN THAT WAY, WE CAN ALSO HELP
YOU WITH THAT. ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS LET CITY
STAFF KNOW. THERE’S A LOT OF CITY STAFF
AROUND THE EDGES OF THE ROOM. CHANCES ARE IF YOU GO BACK THERE
AND SAY HEY, I NEED STAFF, SOMEBODY IS GOING TO HELP YOU. FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO WANT TO
PROVIDE A PUBLIC COMMENT OR QUESTION, WE’RE GOING TO BEGIN
THAT PROCESS. SPEAKERS WILL COME UP, ONCE YOUR
NAME IS CALLED TO THIS MICROPHONE THAT YOU SEE RIGHT IN
FRONT OF ME HERE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE AUDIENCE, AND THAT WILL
BE YOUR PLACE TO SHARE YOUR COMMENT. THIS NEXT PART IS IMPORTANT. TO KEEP IT FAIR AND TO KEEP IT
MOVING, EVERY SPEAKER WILL HAVE THREE MINUTES. THERE’S A LITTLE TIMER UP HERE
THAT’S A LITTLE HARD TO SEE, SO I’M GOING TO HELP YOU AND LET
YOU KNOW WHEN YOU HAVE 30 SECONDS LEFT AND WHEN YOUR TIME
IS UP, AND I WOULD ASK EVERYBODY TO PLEASE DO AS YOU WOULD
NORMALLY WOULD AND BE RESPECTFUL OF THAT. IF AT ANY POINT YOUR COMMENT HAS
ALREADY BEEN SHARED PUBLICLY AND YOU’VE DECIDED YOU WOULD RATHER
NOT GET UP AND SPEAK, THAT’S FINE. JUST LET US KNOW. AGAIN, FLAG DOWN CITY STAFF, WHO
WILL PICK UP YOUR CARD AND MAKE SURE IT’S INCLUDED IN PART OF
THE RECORD. ANOTHER REMINDER, ALTHOUGH I
MENTIONED IT EARLIER, I WANT TO SAY IT AGAIN, ANY QUESTIONS THAT
CANNOT BE ANSWERED TODAY, YOUR CONTACT INFORMATION SHOULD BE ON
THAT COMMENT CARD. SOMEONE FROM EITHER THE CITY OR
THE SUNS WILL GET BACK IN TOUCH WITH YOU AND MAKE SURE THAT
EVERY QUESTION RAISED TODAY IS ANSWERED. WE HAVE ASKED SEVERAL KEY CITY
STAFF AND MEMBERS OF THE SUNS MANAGEMENT TEAM TO JOIN US FOR
THIS PORTION OF THE MEETING TO HELP ANSWER QUESTIONS AND FOR US
TO GAIN THE BENEFIT OF THEIR EXPERTISE. SO WOULD YOU HELP ME IN
WELCOMING, PLEASE, DENISE OLSON, THE CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER FOR
THE CITY OF PHOENIX. DENISE, COME ON UP. [APPLAUSE] THANK YOU. JOHN CHAN, WHO IS THE DIRECTOR
OF THE PHOENIX CONVENTION CENTER. GOOD TO HAVE YOU, JOHN. [APPLAUSE] JEREMY LEGG, THE SPECIAL
PROJECTS MANAGER FOR THE CONVENTION CENTER. HI, JEREMY. [APPLAUSE] JASON ROWLEY, WHO IS THE
PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE PHOENIX SUNS. [APPLAUSE] AND JIM PITMAN, WHO IS THE
EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER FOR THE
SUNS. [APPLAUSE] AND I AM GOING TO… WONDERFUL. SO WITH A LITTLE LAST-MINUTE
INSTRUCTION THERE, I’M GOING TO START CALLING THE COMMENT CARDS. AND THE FIRST ONE, MOLLY WEISS. MOLLY, WOULD YOU STEP UP TO THE
MICROPHONE HERE IN THE CENTER OF THE ROOM?>>[AWAY FROM MICROPHONE]>>WONDERFUL. SO WE’RE GOING TO MAKE SURE THAT
YOUR CARD — YOUR COMMENT IS RECORDED. THANK YOU SO MUCH. FRED LINDSMEYER. DID I SAY YOUR NAME CORRECTLY,
FRED? YEAH. PLEASE COME UP. YEAH, RIGHT THERE. OH, YOU GOT THE PERFECT CHAIR.>>YOU KNOW, WHEN I LISTENED TO
THE NEWS, THEY DIDN’T MENTION THAT THE TOURIST TAX WOULD PAY
FOR THIS. I WAS UNDER THE ASSUMPTION THAT
THE CITY TAXPAYERS ARE GOING TO PAY FOR THIS, BUT THEY DIDN’T
MENTION THAT. WHAT I DON’T UNDERSTAND, WHY
EVEN HAVE THE MEETING IF THE TOURIST TAX IS GOING TO PAY FOR
IT? WHY EVEN HAVE THE MEETING HERE? I CAME DOWN HERE, I WAS UNDER
THE IMPRESSION THAT THE CITY TAXPAYERS WERE GOING TO PAY FOR
THIS, BUT THE TOURIST TAX IS GOING TO PAY FOR IT, SO WHY EVEN
HAVE THE MEETING? THAT’S WHAT I DON’T UNDERSTAND. [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]>>I’LL BE HAPPY TO TAKE THAT
QUESTION. THE REASON THAT CITY COUNCIL
ASKED US TO HOST THE MEETINGS WAS TO BE ABLE TO GET THAT
FACTUAL INFORMATION OUT, TO MAKE SURE THAT OUR CITIZENS WERE
AWARE, IT’S BEEN IN PLACE FOR SO LONG, I THINK MOST OF OUR
CITIZENS WEREN’T AWARE OF EXACTLY HOW IT WAS FUNDED. SO THAT’S EXACTLY WHY COUNCIL
ASKED US TO HOST THE MEETINGS IS TO BE ABLE TO SHARE THE
INFORMATION TO LET OUR CITIZENS KNOW THIS IS FUNDED BY TOURISM.>>YOU MENTIONED EARLIER THAT
THE STATE OWNS THIS PROPERTY. I WAS UNDER THE ASSUMPTION WHEN
YOU MENTIONED THE STATE, THAT THE STATE OF ARIZONA OWNED THIS
PROPERTY, BUT THE CITY OF PHOENIX OWNS THIS PROPERTY.>>THAT’S CORRECT. THE STATE OF ARIZONA –>>YOU SHOULD HAVE BEEN MORE
EXPLICIT, THE CITY OF PHOENIX OWNS THIS PROPERTY, NOT THE
STATE OF ARIZONA. YOU MENTIONED THE STATE.>>GOOD POINT, AND THANKS FOR
THAT. SORRY I WAS UNCLEAR. THE STATE OWNS THE COLISEUM, BUT
–>>OH, THE STATE –>>THE STATE OWNS THE VETERANS
MEMORIAL COLISEUM.>>OUT AT THE FAIRGROUNDS, THE
STATE OWNS THAT PROPERTY.>>AT THE FAIRGROUNDS, CORRECT. WE OWN, THE CITY OF PHOENIX OWNS
THIS BUILDING.>>THE CITY OF PHOENIX OWNS IT.>>CORRECT.>>BUT SOMEONE LET THE BALL
DROP. THEY SHOULD HAVE TOLD KPHO,
CHANNEL 5, AND THE REST OF THE LOCAL CHANNELS HERE IN PHOENIX
THAT THE TOURIST TAX IS GOING TO PAY FOR THIS, NOT THE CITY OF
PHOENIX TAXPAYERS. THEY SHOULD HAVE LET THAT KNOWN.>>YOU MAKE A –>>I WOULDN’T HAVE EVEN COME
DOWN HERE TO SPEAK.>>THANK YOU SO MUCH. WE’LL MAKE SURE THAT THAT’S
SOMETHING THAT THEY’RE VERY CLEAR OF. THANK YOU FOR THAT COMMENT. I APPRECIATE THAT.>>OKAY. THAT’S ALL I HAVE TO SAY. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU, SIR.>>THANK YOU. MOLLY, I’M GOING TO GO BACK AND
READ YOUR COMMENT OUT LOUD SO IT’S INCLUDED IN THE RECORD. MOLLY HAD TO SAY, THIS IS NOT
THE SUNS ARENA; IT IS A SPORTS AND ENTERTAINMENT VENUE. MANY OVERFLOW CONVENTION AND
EVENTS ARE HELD HERE. IF NOT PASSED, DOWNTOWN BECOMES
A GHOST TOWN, BASEBALL ONLY SIX MONTHS OUT OF THE YEAR. MOLLY, THANK YOU FOR THAT
COMMENT. [APPLAUSE] THE NEXT SPEAKER,
FRANKLIN OLIVIERI. DID I SAY
THAT CORRECTLY? HI, FRANKLIN.>>HELLO. I WANT TO THANK THE PHOENIX CITY
COUNCIL FOR HOLDING THIS MEETING FOR THE PUBLIC. MY COMMENT WAS IF THERE’S A
POSSIBILITY THAT IT COULD BE PLACED ON THE BALLOT AND HAVING
A GENERAL ELECTION FOR THE PUBLIC TO VOTE ON THIS.>>OKAY. THANK YOU.>>SO DID EVERYBODY HEAR HIS
QUESTION? OKAY. THE ORDINANCE AND THE TAX THAT
EXISTS TODAY THAT WOULD FUND THE BUILDING ARE ALREADY ON THE CITY
BOOKS, SO IT’S SOMETHING THAT EXISTS TODAY ON THE CITY BOOKS
FOR THE TAX, SO IT’S NOT A NEW TAX THAT COULD TAKE PLACE, BUT
WE’VE GOT YOUR COMMENT, AND WE’LL MAKE SURE THE CITY
COUNCIL, ALL THE MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL GET THAT COMMENT
FROM YOU. I’LL MAKE SURE THAT THEY GET
THAT THROUGH TO THEM.>>THANK YOU.>>THE NEXT CARD INDICATES
ALICIA SHIELDS WOULD PREFER NOT TO SPEAK, BUT LET ME READ —
HAVE YOU CHANGED YOUR MIND? COME ON UP. DID I SAY YOUR FIRST NAME
CORRECTLY, ALICIA?>>OR ALICIA.>>OR ALICIA, WHATEVER YOU
PREFER.>>SO WE LIVE DOWNTOWN, MY THREE
KIDS, MY HUSBAND AND I, AND THE SOLE REASON WE BOUGHT A CONDO
WAS BECAUSE OF THE SPORTING EVENTS. WE LOVE TO GO TO THE D-BACKS
GAMES, WE LOVE TO COME TO THE SUNS GAMES, MERCURY GAMES. WE HAVEN’T QUITE COME TO A
RATTLERS GAME YET, BUT THAT’S NEXT ON OUR AGENDA. WITHOUT THIS ARENA OR THE SUNS
HERE, WE WOULDN’T ARE BE — WE WOULDN’T LIVE HERE. AND I KNOW THAT WE’RE NOT THE
ONLY ONES IN THAT BOAT. I KNOW OTHER PEOPLE THAT ARE
HERE SOLELY BECAUSE OF THE SPORTING EVENTS. SO HAVE YOU LOOKED AT HOW THIS
WILL IMPACT LOCAL RESIDENTS AND THE PROPERTY VALUE?>>SO GREAT QUESTION. NO. THE REASON NO IS BECAUSE
REGARDLESS OF WHAT HAPPENS AT THIS, AND TO THE PREVIOUS
GENTLEMAN’S COMMENT, WE STILL OWN THIS BUILDING. REGARDLESS OF WHAT HAPPENS, THE
CITY STILL HAS TO MAINTAIN THIS BUILDING, THE CITY STILL HAS TO
DO SOMETHING WITH THE BUILDING. SO WE’VE NOT DONE AN ANALYSIS AS
TO WHAT IT WOULD MEAN. AS WE MOVE FORWARD, DEPENDING ON
WHAT WOULD HAPPEN, WE’LL WORK TOWARDS THAT ANALYSIS, BUT NO,
WE’VE NOT LOOKED AT WHAT IT WOULD DO TO PROPERTY TAX AND FOR
US, SOLELY BECAUSE THE BUILDING STILL WILL REMAIN, IT WILL STILL
BE A CITY PIECE OF REAL ESTATE THAT WE’LL OWN AND NEED TO DO
SOMETHING WITH.>>YEAH, I THINK THAT WOULD BE
IMPORTANT BECAUSE FOR A LOT OF US, I MEAN, AN EMPTY BUILDING
ISN’T GOING TO MAKE PEOPLE WANT TO LIVE HERE, AND EVEN JUST
CONCERTS AREN’T GOING TO MAKE PEOPLE WANT TO LIVE HERE,
BECAUSE YOU CAN GO — YOU GO TO ONE CONCERT A YEAR, TWO CONCERTS
A YEAR. BUT IF YOU’RE A SEASON TICKET
HOLDER, YOU COME TO A WHOLE LOT OF GAMES, SO IT MAKES A LOT MORE
SENSE FOR US TO LIVE HERE FOR A SPORTS TEAM. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE]>>INCIDENTALLY, I SHOULD HAVE
MENTIONED EARLIER THAT EVERYBODY WHO WANTS TO SPEAK WILL GET A
CHANCE TO SPEAK THIS MORNING. WE WILL EXTEND THE MEETING TO
MAKE SURE THAT EVERYBODY IS HEARD. CHAD LUSTER INDICATED THAT YOU
WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. HI, CHAD.>>MY NEIGHBOR ALICIA KIND OF
TOOK THE WIND OUT OF WIND OUT OF MY SAILS. I WAS GOING TO SAY THE EXACT
SAME THING THAT SHE SAID, SO THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU, CHAD. [APPLAUSE] THAT’S ANOTHER GOOD REMINDER,
IF SOMEONE HAS ALREADY COVERED WHAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO TALK
ABOUT, FEEL FREE TO DO WHAT CHAD JUST DID AND INDICATE THAT THE
MATERIAL HAS ALREADY BEEN COVERED. WE REALLY APPRECIATE THAT. ANTHONY WASS DID NOT INDICATE
WHETHER OR NOT HE WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. ANTHONY, WOULD YOU LIKE TO
SPEAK? GLAD TO HAVE ON YOU WITH US.>>WELL, I’M HERE BECAUSE I
THINK ALL THE FANS SHOULD BE THE ONES PAYING THE TAXES FOR THIS
BUILDING BECAUSE WE ALL WANT TO KEEP THE SUNS HERE. WE ALSO HAVE WRESTLING COMING
OUT TO THIS EVENT IN THIS ARENA. WE NEED TO KEEP THAT. NOT ONLY THE CONCERTS, BUT WE
NEED TO KEEP STUFF LIKE THAT FOR PEOPLE TO SEE. SO IF YOU REALLY NEED
CONTRACTORS TO REALLY GET THIS BUILDING DONE, MAYBE THE CITY
SHOULD PAY FOR ALL KINDS OF CONTRACTORS. IT DOESN’T MATTER WHAT
COMPANIES, FROM WHERE AND EVERYTHING ELSE TO GET THIS
BUILDING DONE FOR THESE EVENTS. AND YOU KNOW, I THINK ALSO TOO,
THE FANS OF THE WOMEN’S TEAM SHOULD ALSO HELP OUT KEEPING
THIS BUILDING. I MEAN, BECAUSE WE’RE USING
OTHER BUILDINGS LIKE THE CHASE BUILDING FOR MONSTER
TRUCKS, THERE’S SOME FOOTBALL GAMES THEY USED IT FOR AND
STUFF LIKE THAT, BUT THIS IS THE ONLY BUILDING THAT WE
HAVE LOVED HERE IN PHOENIX, AND WE WANT
TO KEEP IT GOING. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU VERY MUCH. [APPLAUSE] CHRIS, DO YOU WANT TO STAY A
WORD OR TWO ABOUT THE CONTRACTORS THAT WOULD BE
INVOLVED? IT’S A PRETTY BIG NUMBER, I
WOULD THINK.>>SO SHOULD THE COUNCIL CHOOSE
TO MOVE FORWARD WITH THE RENOVATION OF THE BUILDING, IT
WOULD BE DONE THROUGH A FULL PUBLIC PROCUREMENT PROCESS, SO
IT WOULD BE ALL THE CONTRACTORS WOULD HAVE A CHANCE TO BID AND
DO THE WORK THAT THEY NEED TO DO, SO IT WOULD BE A FULL
PROCESS.>>SO IF I WANT TO GET INVOLVED,
I CAN BID ON IT, RIGHT? I’M A CONTRACTOR.>>YES, IT’S OPEN TO ALL
CONTRACTORS. SO SHOULD THIS MOVE FORWARD,
THOSE CONTRACTS WOULD BE POSTED, AND WE WOULD DO IT THROUGH A
FULL PROCUREMENT PROCESS.>>SO WHERE DO WE –>>YOU KNOW WHAT WE’LL DO IS AS
WE MOVE FORWARD, SHOULD WE MOVE FORWARD WITH THIS, WE’LL MAKE
SURE THAT THAT’S ALL POSTED ON OUR WEBSITE, JUST LIKE WE DO ALL
OF OUR PUBLIC PROCUREMENT.>>AND ANTHONY, IF YOU HAVE
FURTHER QUESTIONS, IF YOU WOULD TAG ONE OF THE CITY STAFF
MEMBERS, THEY’LL HELP YOU OUT. STAFF, WOULD SOMEBODY RAISE
THEIR HAND? RIGHT OVER THERE IN THE BACK.>>GRETCHEN IN THE SALMON SHIRT
IS MY PROCUREMENT OFFICER, RIGHT THERE IN THE BACK CORNER. SHE CAN ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS YOU
HAVE.>>THANK YOU SO MUCH. JESSICA HIPSKIND?>>[AWAY FROM MICROPHONE]>>OKAY. HER COMMENT IS THAT SHE FULLY
SUPPORTS THE ARENA. [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]>>WESLEY HARRIS ASKED TO SPEAK.>>GOOD MORNING. HAPPY NEW YEAR. THIS IS A CASE OF PRIORITIES. THE CITY OF PHOENIX HAS
BASICALLY FOUR MANDATES: WATER, WASTEWATER, SOLID WASTE,
DISPOSAL PICKUP, PUBLIC SAFETY, ROADS. BEYOND THAT, THE THINGS THAT ARE
COVERED IN THE CITY CHARTER DO NOT INCLUDE SPORTS ARENAS, DO
NOT INCLUDE SHERATON HOTELS, DO NOT INCLUDE ANY OF THESE PRIVATE
SECTOR TYPE OF OPERATIONS. SO I’M BASICALLY AGAINST THE
CITY PICKING WINNERS AND LOSERS IN TERMS OF WHO SHOULD GET
SUBSIDIES. WHAT HAPPENS TO THE TOURISM TAX
IF THIS FACILITY GOES AWAY?>>I WOULD BE HAPPY TO ANSWER. DENISE, DO YOU WANT TO ANSWER
THAT QUESTION, OR DO YOU WANT ME TO?>>YES, THANK YOU, WES. SO WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IS, THAT’S
AT THE COUNCIL’S DISCRETION, BUT AS WE KEEP REITERATING, WE STILL
OWN THIS FACILITY, SO WE WOULD HAVE TO LOOK AT THAT REVENUE
SOURCE AND WHAT WE WOULD DO WITH THIS FACILITY FIRST BEFORE THAT
DECISION IS MADE AND MAKE SURE WE DO A COMPREHENSIVE PLAN.>>TOURISM TAX WOULD STILL BE
THERE REGARDLESS.>>THAT WOULD BE UP TO THE
COUNCIL, AS WELL AS WHAT WOULD HAPPEN WITH THIS FACILITY THAT
WE OWN.>>OKAY. WELL, OF COURSE IT WOULD BE UP
TO THE COUNCIL AS TO HOW YOU DISTRIBUTE THAT MONEY, BUT IT
STILL WOULD BE THERE. YOU WOULD STILL BE COLLECTING
IT. SO IT DOESN’T NECESSARILY TIE TO
THIS BUILDING. THAT’S MY POINT. THE REVENUE IS TAX REVENUE
REGARDLESS OF WHERE IT COMES FROM, IT’S REVENUE FOR THE CITY
OF PHOENIX.>>SO WES, JUST TO MAKE SURE I’M
BEING CLEAR HERE, SO THE ORIGINAL INTENT OF THE SALES TAX
FOR THE TOURIST ON HOTELS AND RENTAL CARS WAS FOR SUPPORTING
THIS ARENA, SO THE SERVICES ASSOCIATED WITH THIS ARENA AS
WELL AS THE REPAIR AND REPLACEMENT OF THIS ARENA. SO IF THE COUNCIL WANTED TO
CHANGE THAT DIRECTION, THEY DO HAVE THAT ABILITY TO DO SO.>>OKAY. BASICALLY, YES. THERE’S JUST SO MUCH DISPOSABLE
INCOME THAT’S GOING TO BE SPENT REGARDLESS OF WHETHER IT’S
DOWNTOWN. THERE ARE NO PHOENIX SUNS IN
DISTRICT 3 WHERE I LIVE, SO WE DON’T HAVE ANY OF THAT UP THERE,
BUT CONCEIVABLY THE SUNS COULD MOVE UP THERE. CONCEIVABLY, THE SUNS COULD BUY
THIS BUILDING AND RELIEVE THE CITY OF THAT. WHAT HAPPENS TO THE INCOME FROM
THE OTHER EVENTS? BECAUSE WHEN THE SUNS AREN’T
PLAYING HERE, THEN IT’S LIKE 300 DAYS A YEAR THAT IT’S DARK
UNLESS YOU FILL IT WITH SOMETHING ELSE LIKE THE RATTLERS
AND THE MERCURY AND VARIOUS CONCERTS. WHAT HAPPENS TO THAT REVENUE? WHO GETS THAT?>>AND MR. HARRIS, WE’RE DOWN TO
JUST A FEW SECONDS LEFT.>>SO I CAN — LET ME SEE IF I
CAN ANSWER THAT. IF NOT, I’LL TURN IT OVER TO MY
ILLUSTRIOUS COLLEAGUE. SO THE REVENUE THAT COMES OFF
THE OTHER EVENTS THAT HAPPEN IN THE BUILDING PAY FOR THE
OPERATIONS, PAY FOR THE MAINTENANCE, PAY FOR THE THINGS
THAT HAPPEN AND IT GOES THROUGH CHANNELS, AND THE CITY OF
PHOENIX THEN SHARES IN THE PROFITS OFF OF THE BUILDING WITH
THE ANCHOR TENANT.>>WITH THE –>>WITH THE SUNS.>>WITH THE SUNS.>>YEAH, WHO RUN THE BUILDING
FOR US.>>THE SUNS TAKE ADVANTAGE OF
THE –>>WELL, WHEN YOU LOOK AT, AS AN
EXAMPLE, THE $300 MILLION THAT THEY’VE SPENT OPERATING THE
BUILDING FOR US HAS COME OFF OF THE REVENUE THAT THEY’VE MADE,
THAT HAS BEEN MADE OFF OF THOSE OTHER EVENTS AND CONCERTS.>>OKAY. VERY GOOD.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] NEXT IS CHRIS CAMACHO, WHO DID
NOT INDICATE WHETHER OR NOT SHE WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK, CEO OF
GPEC. SO I’M GOING TO GO AHEAD AND
READ THIS COMMENT. AS THE CEO OF GPEC, I AM
SUPPORTIVE OF THE TALKING STICK ARENA RENOVATION, AS IT SERVES
AS AN IMPORTANT ANCHOR IN OUR DOWNTOWN. THIS DEAL MAKES SENSE FOR OUR
BRAND, I THINK IS WHAT IT SAYS, AND RETURNS TO THE TAXPAYER. THANK YOU FOR THAT. YOU’RE WELCOME TO APPLAUD. CANDACE FREENOW. VERY GOOD. SHE HAS SUPPORT WITH TWO
EXCLAMATION POINTS. THE CITY OF PHOENIX CANNOT
AFFORD THE LIABILITY OF NOT GETTING IT DONE SOONER THAN
LATER. THE BURTON BARR LIBRARY IS A
PRIME EXAMPLE. THANK YOU FOR THAT COMMENT. JEREMIAH ARROJO ALSO DID NOT
INDICATE WHETHER OR NOT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. COME ON UP. THANK YOU.>>JUST A QUICK QUESTION. SO WITH THE OTHER PROFESSIONAL
SPORTS TEAMS THAT ALSO OCCUPY THIS BUILDING, WILL THEY ALSO
CONTRIBUTE TO HELP WITH THE RENOVATIONS, OR IS IT JUST
SOLELY THE SUNS, AS THE CHART HAS INDICATED, WITH OBVIOUSLY
THE TAX COMING FROM THE TOURISM AND THEN WITH THE SUNS? WHAT ABOUT THE OTHER
PROFESSIONAL SPORTS TEAMS THAT ARE NOW OCCUPYING THE BUILDING
OR IN THE FUTURE COULD OCCUPY THE BUILDING?>>THANK YOU FOR THE QUESTION. SO THE RATTLERS ARE A TENANT OF
OUR BUILDING, SO THEY AREN’T OWNED BY THE SUNS. THEY’RE THEIR OWN ENTITY. SO THEY ARE NOT DOING ANYTHING
TO NECESSARILY SUPPORT, BUT THEY DO PLAY HERE AND GENERATE
REVENUE IN THE BUILDING THAT THEN FEEDS INTO THE FACILITIES
FLOW. THE MERCURY ARE OWNED BY THE
SUNS, SO IN ESSENCE, THE SUNS AND THE MERCURY ARE ONE AND THE
SAME. SO YES, THE MERCURY ARE
CONTRIBUTING.>>THANK YOU VERY MUCH. [APPLAUSE] DIANE BARKER ALSO DID NOT
INDICATE WHETHER OR NOT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. YOU HAVE A QUESTION. WOULD YOU LIKE ME TO READ IT? NOPE. DIANE IS COMING UP.>>I JUST WANT TO THANK THE CITY
FOR THIS OPPORTUNITY. I’M A RESIDENT LIVING IN
DOWNTOWN PHOENIX, AND I LOOK FORWARD TO THE POSITIVE
EVOLUTION WHICH I BELIEVE WILL HAPPEN. MADAM, I WOULD LIKE YOU TO READ
WHAT I SAID.>>I WOULD BE HAPPY TO. HAVE YOU SPOKEN WITH THE
DIAMONDBACKS MARICOPA STADIUM DISTRICT ABOUT UNIFIED
MULTIPURPOSE PARTICIPATORY SPECTATOR RETAIL SPORTS COMPLEX?>>SO I CAN ANSWER THAT AND THEN
TURN IT OVER TO MY COLLEAGUES IF I DON’T ANSWER IT CORRECTLY OR
THOROUGHLY ENOUGH FOR EVERYONE. SO THIS IS A CITY-OWNED
BUILDING. THE DIAMONDBACKS ARE A
COUNTY-OWNED BUILDING. THEY ARE ON KIND OF DIFFERENT
PATHS AND TRACKS, BUT I CAN ASSURE YOU AS THE ACADEMIC
DEVELOPER, WE’RE ALWAYS HAVING CONVERSATIONS TO LOOK AT ANY
OPPORTUNITY WE HAVE HERE IN DOWNTOWN PHOENIX. BUT NO, THIS IS A CITY-OWNED
BUILDING, AND THE CITY COUNCIL’S GUIDANCE AND DIRECTION TO US AND
THEN AS THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPER, THIS IS OUR FIRST PRIORITY IS
THIS BUILDING RIGHT NOW AND WORKING IT THROUGH. THAT DOESN’T MEAN THAT WE DON’T
HAVE OUR EYE ON THAT BALL, NO PUN INTENDED, AS WELL.>>THANK YOU. I’M EXCITED.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] MY FRIEND CARL GENTLES
INDICATED HE WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. CARL?>>GOOD MORNING.>>GOOD MORNING.>>HOW ARE YOU?>>WELL, THANK YOU.>>LISTEN, I LIVE AT I-17 AND
PINNACLE PEAK. THAT’S IN DISTRICT 1. IT’S ABOUT 30 MINUTES FROM HERE. AND I DRIVE DOWN HERE EVERY DAY. I DRIVE DOWN HERE FOR SPORTS
EVENTS AND OTHER CULTURAL ACTIVITIES, AND I DO SUPPORT THE
RENOVATION OF THE ARENA. MY THOUGHTS ARE ABOUT MY FAMILY
AND ABOUT WHAT THE ARENA DOES FOR MY WORK PROFESSIONALLY,
WHICH IS, LOOK, A LOT OF DREAMS, A LOT OF MEMORIES HAVE BEEN MADE
HERE WITH OUR FAMILIES, INCLUDING MINE, AND SO WE WOULD
LIKE TO SEE THAT CONTINUE. ALSO FROM A PROFESSIONAL
STANDPOINT, I WORK FOR A NONPROFIT CALLED THE BACK TO
SCHOOL — DRIVE, AND BOTH THE SUNS AND THE CITY HAVE BEEN
IMMENSELY SUPPORTIVE, AND I WOULD HATE TO SEE THAT GO AWAY
FOR THE 220,000 NONPROFITS THAT ARE HERE IN THE VALLEY, SO I
COME ON BEHALF OF SPEAKING FOR THOSE NONPROFITS AS WELL. AND FINALLY, LET ME JUST SAY
THIS, THIS WOULD BE LIKE GOING TO A RESTAURANT AND EATING YOUR
FOOD AND DRINKING YOUR BEST DRINK AND THEN SENDING IT BACK
SAYING I DON’T LIKE IT, BECAUSE WE HAVE ALL ENJOYED THIS
BUILDING FOR 30 YEARS, AND I THINK IT’S TIME TO UPGRADE IT. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] BRENT KLEINMAN? BRENT, ARE YOU STILL HERE? YOU HAD ASKED TO SPEAK. HI, BRENT.>>GOOD MORNING. THERE HAVE BEEN SOME GREAT
COMMENTS SO FAR ABOUT THIS. I HAVE TWO QUESTIONS, CONCERNS
IN REGARDS TO THIS. ONE, I UNDERSTAND OVER THE LAST
30 YEARS THE SPLIT HAS BEEN 80 MILLION, 150 MILLION, AND I’M
ASSUMING THAT’S WHERE THE BASIS CAME TO FLIP IT GOING FORWARD. I WOULD LIKE TO SEE THE CITY
AND/OR THE SUNS COME OUT WITH A MORE DETAILED LIST OF WHAT THAT
$150 MILLION IS PAYING FOR, THE INTENTIONS OF WHAT WE’RE DOING,
BECAUSE I THINK IT’S BEEN KIND OF FOGGY WITH HERE ARE SOME OLD
PIPES, HERE ARE SOME DIFFERENT THINGS. I WOULD LIKE TO SEE SOMETHING
MORE DETAILED ON THAT SO WE KNOW WHAT WE’RE GETTING FOR
$150 MILLION. I’M SUPPORTIVE OF IT, BUT MY
SECOND CONCERN IS THE ADDITIONAL YEARS ADDED ONTO THE LEASE. IF THE SUNS WANT TO PARTNER WITH
THE CITY THE WAY THEY SAY THEY DO, WHY IS IT JUST FIVE MORE
GUARANTEED YEARS? WHY ISN’T IT TEN? WHY ISN’T IT FIFTEEN? WHY ISN’T IT TWENTY? IF WE’RE GOING TO SPEND
230 MILLION-PLUS DOLLARS RENOVATING THIS STADIUM, ISN’T
IT GOOD ENOUGH TO GET US ANOTHER 20-SOME YEARS LIKE THE
ORIGINAL BUILD OF IT DID, NOT JUST AN ADDITIONAL FIVE YEARS
BEFORE THEY CAN OPT OUT AGAIN? THANK YOU VERY MUCH.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE]>>THAT’S A GREAT QUESTION. THANK YOU FOR THAT. WE’LL DEFINITELY BE MORE
FORTHCOMING IN THE FUTURE TALKING ABOUT THE DETAILS OF THE
RENOVATION, BUT THE CITY’S PORTION OF THE FUNDING PAID WITH
THE TOURIST TAXES IS GOING TO BE PAYING FOR THINGS THAT ANY
LANDLORD WOULD NEED TO BE COVERING, MAKING SURE THAT THE
LIGHTS GO ON, THAT THE FAUCETS RUN AND THE TOILETS FLUSH, THAT
THE ELEVATORS AND THE ESCALATORS WORK, REALLY CORE BASIC BUILDING
INFRASTRUCTURE, AND THE 80-PLUS MILLION DOLLARS
CONTRIBUTED BY THE SUNS WOULD BE FOCUSING ON A LOT OF
THE FAN AMENITIES, A LOT OF THE THINGS THAT ALL
OF THE FANS OF THE CONCERTS AND THE FAMILY SHOWS
AND THE PROFESSIONAL SPORTING EVENTS WILL REALLY BE ABLE TO
SEE AND FEEL WHEN THEY’RE HERE. A LOT OF THE CITY FUNDING WILL
BE TOWARDS SOME OF THOSE THINGS THAT ARE BEHIND THE SCENES, ALL
OF THE TENS OF THOUSANDS OF FEET OF PIPE THAT ARE BEHIND THE
WALLS BUT THAT ARE CORRODING OUT AND NEED TO BE REPLACED, WE’LL
BE TAKING CARE OF THOSE ITEMS.>>AND THEN THERE WAS A SECOND
PART OF THAT QUESTION ABOUT THE LEASE, WHY IS NOT THE LEASE
LONGER.>>SO THAT IS ALSO A GOOD
QUESTION. CURRENTLY AS CHRIS INDICATED,
THE AGREEMENT DOES RUN THROUGH 2032, WHICH WAS 40 YEARS FROM
WHEN THE BUILDING WAS BUILT. HOWEVER, STARTING IN 2019, THE
CITY COULD RECEIVE NOTICE FROM THE SUNS THAT IF THEY BELIEVE
THAT THE FACILITY MAY BE OBSOLETE, THERE ARE JUST THINGS
THAT DON’T WORK AS THEY WERE INTENDED TO WORK WHEN THIS
BUILDING OPENED IN 1992, THAT THEY CAN OPT OUT TEN YEARS
EARLY, WHICH WOULD BE ONLY 2022. SO THAT’S REALLY THE TIME
HORIZON WE’RE LOOKING AT. SO ADDING A FIFTEEN YEARS ON TOP
OF THAT TO 2037 PLUS THE OPTIONAL FIVE-YEAR OPTION TO
2042 IS THE TIMEFRAME WE’RE LOOKING AT FOR THESE
IMPROVEMENTS.>>ANYTHING? OKAY, GOOD. THANK YOU. PATRICK SEIFTER ASKED TO SPEAK. PATRICK, ARE YOU HERE? THERE HE IS. COME ON UP. THANKS FOR BEING WITH US TODAY.>>THANK YOU, AND I’LL MAKE THIS
AS BRIEF AS POSSIBLE, BUT OUR CITY IS GOING THROUGH A LOT OF
CRISES RIGHT NOW, POLICING, POVERTY, PENSIONS, AND WHILE
OBVIOUSLY THIS MONEY THAT WE’RE TALKING ABOUT ISN’T GOING TO
SOLVE ALL OF THAT, VOTING NO IS GOING TO SHOW THAT WE’RE SERIOUS
ABOUT FIXING THESE PROBLEMS. AND I WANT TO THE RESPOND TO
SOMEONE WHO COMPARED THIS EARLIER TO A LIBRARY, I CAN’T
CHECK OUT A BOOK HERE, I CAN’T ATTEND A CLASS HERE, I CAN’T SEE
AN ART GALLERY HERE. LIBRARIES ACTUALLY CONTRIBUTE TO
OUR COMMUNITY. THIS CONTRIBUTES TO PRIVATE
COMPANIES MAKING A PROFIT, WHICH IS FINE, BUT NOT WITH MY MONEY. UNLESS IF I AM DIRECTLY GOING TO
COME AND PAY FOR A TICKET, I DON’T WANT TO PAY FOR THIS. I’M SORRY TO BREAK UP YOUR ALL’S
PEP RALLY, BUT THIS ISN’T WHAT THIS IS ABOUT. [APPLAUSE] I LIKE THE SUNS. I REMEMBER THE FINAL BACK IN THE
OLD MADHOUSE ON MCDOWELL. I’M A FAN. BUT I’LL PAY FOR IT WHEN I COME
TO A GAME, NOT WHEN I WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT MY STREETS ARE
SAFE AND FIXED, NOT WHEN I SEE MY FRIENDS GET HARASSED BY OUR
POLICE DEPARTMENT. NOT WHEN I SEE MUCH MORE
IMPORTANT INFRASTRUCTURE PROBLEMS THAT THIS CITY NEEDS TO
DEAL WITH, WATER BEING THE BIGGEST ONE, THAN FIXING PIPES
HERE. AND I ALSO DON’T APPRECIATE
BASELESS THREATS FROM AN OWNER WHO SAYS THAT IF HE DOESN’T GET
WHAT HE WANTS, HE’S GOING TO MOVE. YOUR CHARITY, THE SUNS CHARITY
HAS DONE A LOT OF GOOD THINGS, BUT I ASK, WERE ALL THOSE GOOD
THINGS JUST SO YOU WERE GOING TO GET THIS MONEY BACK LATER, OR IS
IT BECAUSE YOU’RE PART OF THE COMMUNITY? BECAUSE RIGHT NOW I DON’T FEEL
YOU’RE PART OF THE COMMUNITY, AND I’VE LIVED IN THIS STATE MY
ENTIRE LIFE, AND I’VE LIVED IN THIS CITY FOR A VERY LONG TIME,
AND I JUST DON’T FEEL YOU’RE PART OF IT. SO I’M ABSOLUTELY AGAINST THIS. YOU KNOW, THE FACT THAT — AND I
WANT EVERYONE TO THINK ABOUT THIS — THIS ARENA IS THE OLDEST
ONE IN THE NBA, THAT’S A FACT. DON’T YOU THINK THAT’S A PROBLEM
THAT THIS ARENA THAT’S NOT EVEN 30 YEARS OLD IS THE OLDEST? THERE ARE TEAMS OLDER THAN OURS. SO LET’S — FRANKLY, LET’S STOP
WASTING MONEY ON THINGS THAT DON’T BENEFIT EVERYBODY. WE’RE A CITY OF EVERYBODY, AND
THIS IS NOT EVERYBODY. THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE]>>LET’S SEE. SOVERO ANTAVARROS ASKED TO
SPEAK. I HOPE I GOT YOUR NAME RIGHT. OKAY. THANK YOU.>>I WANT TO THANK THE MAYOR AND
THE CITY STAFF FOR BEING HERE AND OTHER REPRESENTATIVES FOR
ALLOWING US TO HAVE THIS MEETING. MY WIFE AND I LIVE NEARBY, THE
GRANT PARK NEIGHBORHOOD, AND I WANT TO THANK THE SUNS FOR THEIR
CONTRIBUTING THROUGH THEIR CHARITIES, IMPROVING PARKS AND
DOING WHAT THEY CAN IN THAT REGARD, BUT WHAT I WOULD LIKE TO
SEE THE CITY IN THE NEGOTIATIONS WITH THE SUNS IS TRYING TO GET
THE SUNS TO INCREASE THE NUMBER OF FULL-TIME POSITIONS BUT ALSO
PAYING A LIVING WAGE. MANY, MANY EMPLOYEES THAT WORK
IN THIS FACILITY MAKE BARELY THE MINIMUM WAGE, THE ONES CLEANING
THE BATHROOMS, THE ONES PROVIDING SECURITY, YOU KNOW,
MAKING 11, 12 BUCKS AN HOUR, IF THAT. WE NEED TO PAY A LIVING WAGE TO
ALL OF OUR EMPLOYEES. [APPLAUSE]>>THANK YOU. DOUG LIEBMAN ASKED TO SPEAK. HI, DOUG.>>I THINK I’M THE FIRST PERSON
UP HERE WHO IS NOT A RESIDENT OF PHOENIX. SO THE MONEY THAT I BRING AS A
SEASON TICKET HOLDER WITH THE SUNS AND THE CONCERTS THAT I
COME TO ARE NOT A PART OF ANY COMMUNITY. I WOULDN’T BE TAXED AS A RESULT
OF THIS. I DON’T THINK ANYONE IN PHOENIX
IS ACTUALLY BEING TAXED. I THINK THAT’S ALREADY BEEN
STATED THAT THE TAXES COME FROM VISITORS. AND I MOVED TO ARIZONA BECAUSE I
WANTED TO MOVE, BECAUSE I WANTED TO LIVE HERE. MY QUESTION IS, NUMBER ONE, AND
I’M NOT SURE WHO IS THE RIGHT PERSON TO ANSWER THIS, THERE WAS
A STUDY DONE, AM I CORRECT, TAXPAYER-FUNDED STUDY?>>JUST FOR CLARIFICATION SO I
KNOW WHO IT TURN IT OVER TO, WHAT TYPE OF A STUDY?>>A STUDY ON THE NECESSITY OF
REPARATIONS TO THE ARENA.>>OH, I’LL TURN THIS QUESTION
OVER TO JEREMY LEGG TO ANSWER THAT QUESTION.>>THAT’S A GOOD QUESTION. THANK YOU FOR THAT. SO THE SUNS HAVE COMMISSIONED A
STUDY OF WHAT POSSIBLE RENOVATIONS MIGHT LOOK LIKE TO
THIS FACILITY. THE CITY HAS REVIEWED THAT WITH
THEM, AND WE HAVE IDENTIFIED THE NEEDS FOR A $230 MILLION
RENOVATION, AT LEAST $150 MILLION WORTH OF WHICH
IS FOR REALLY BASIC CORE BUILDING INFRASTRUCTURE.>>AND WAS THAT A
TAXPAYER-FUNDED STUDY?>>NO. GOOD QUESTION. SO THE SUNS PAID FOR THIS STUDY
THEMSELVES. CERTAINLY CITY STAFF HAVE BEEN
LOOKING AT IT.>>SO I THINK THERE WOULD BE ONE
POINT THAT TO RELEASE THAT STUDY, LET PEOPLE KNOW EXACTLY
WHAT IT IS THAT’S GOING ON. I WILL TELL YOU AS SOMEONE WHO
DOES ADVOCACY WORK THAT THERE ARE THINGS THAT I COME TO IN
THIS ARENA THAT I DON’T GET, INCLUDING AND I’VE BEEN TOLD
PARTS OF THE REASONS ARE THAT IT’S AN ANTIQUATED ARENA. SO THE MONEY THAT I BRING IN
FROM OUTSIDE, I MAY MAKE A DIFFERENT DETERMINATION OF HOW I
SPEND MY MONEY, BUT IN TERMS OF FOOD SERVICE, THE KITCHENS, THE
INFRASTRUCTURE, A LOT OF REVENUE THAT COMES FROM LEVY’S CONTRACT
WITH THE ARENA, I THINK THOSE IMPROVEMENTS MAKE SENSE FOR THE
CITY. I WILL TELL YOU WHEN I FIRST
STARTED DOING BUSINESS HERE IN THE EARLY 1980s, IF I CAME TO
THIS AREA OF DOWNTOWN, THIS WAS A VERY DIFFERENT-LOOKING
DOWNTOWN. THIS TEAM AND THIS ARENA MADE
ALL OF THIS HAPPEN, THE WHOLE ENTERTAINMENT SPORTS DISTRICT
DOWN HERE, THIS BUILDING WAS THE CONTRIBUTOR, AND I DON’T SEE ANY
REASON, UNLESS SPENDING THIS MONEY DOESN’T MAKE SENSE TO
WIDEN THE AREAS THAT NEED WIDENING, TO IMPROVE THE
AREAS THAT NEED IMPROVING, THERE’S NO SENSE TO ME OF NOT
TAKING SOMETHING THAT WAS THE STAPLE TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF
THIS AREA OF DOWNTOWN AND DOING AWAY WITH IT. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] DAVID CYBENTHALL CHOSE NOT TO
SPEAK. HIS COMMENT IS, IF IT HAS
ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE SUNS, I SAY GET IT DONE. HOPE IT HAPPENS. AND SARVER TRIES TO BE A BETTER
OWNER. FINALLY, I HAVE A LIFELONG
FRIEND WHO WORKS IN THE PARKING GARAGE HERE. IT WILL HELP HIM TOO. THANK YOU FOR THAT COMMENT. JADE DURAN RICHARDSON. JADE, ARE YOU HERE? WOULD YOU LIKE TO SPEAK? HERE SHE COMES.>>HI.>>HI.>>THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME. MY NAME IS JADE DURAN
RICHARDSON. I’M HERE TO SPEAK TODAY ABOUT
THE ISSUE OF THE SUNS. I HAVE LIVED IN CENTRAL PHOENIX,
MY ENTIRE LIFE IN PHOENIX, SO I’VE BEEN HERE FOR TEN YEARS, I
USED TO LIVE RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET AT SUMMIT AND LOVED
WALKING OVER HERE FOR SUNS GAMES, MERCURY GAMES, CONCERTS,
YOU NAME IT. I’VE BEEN DOWN HERE AND
HAVE HAD SOME OF THE BEST NIGHTS OF MY LIFE
WITH MY FRIENDS. THAT BEING SAID, I DO NOT
SUPPORT MY TAX DOLLARS GOING TO THIS RESTORATION OR RENOVATIONS. I WOULD LIKE MY TAX DOLLARS TO
GO TO OUR TEACHERS AND OUR SCHOOLS WHO DON’T HAVE
ELECTRICITY AND DON’T HAVE PLUMBING. THAT’S A GOOD USE OF OUR CITY
DOLLARS AND OUR CITY MONEY OF WHERE IT SHOULD BE SPENT, NOT ON
ENTERTAINMENT WHERE PEOPLE WHO ARE PRIVILEGED ENOUGH TO AFFORD
TO COMING TO A GAME AND CAN PAY A LITTLE BIT OF A HIGHER TAX TO
COVER THIS, THAT’S WHERE THEY CAN GET THE MONEY FROM. THIS MONEY, IF THE CITY HAS IT,
HAS ENOUGH TAX DOLLARS TO GIVE BILLIONS AND MILLIONS OF DOLLARS
AWAY FOR AN ARENA RENOVATION, IT SHOULD GO TO OUR TEACHERS AND
OUR STUDENTS AND OUR STREETS WHERE WE ACTUALLY NEED IT. WE HAVE STUDENTS WHO DON’T EVEN
HAVE BOOKS OR PENS OR PAPERS AND TEACHERS WHO ARE PAYING OUT OF
POCKET TO COVER FOOD OR SUPPLIES FOR THEIR CLASSROOMS, AND THEY
DON’T HAVE A SALARY THAT THEY CAN TAKE HOME TO. THAT’S WHERE THE MONEY SHOULD
GO, NOT ENTERTAINMENT. WE CAN AFFORD ENTERTAINMENT ON
OUR OWN. THAT’S A LUXURY THAT THOSE OF US
THAT ARE WEALTHY ENOUGH TO AFFORD THAT OR HAVE THE
COMFORTABLENESS TO DO, WE CAN PAY FOR THAT IN TICKETS OR
TAXES, BUT NOT CITY TAXES THAT SHOULD GO TO FIXING OUR STREETS
AND OUR SCHOOLS AND PAY OUR TEACHERS. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE]>>CHRIS, THAT TAX QUESTION
KEEPS COMING UP AGAIN AND AGAIN. DO YOU WANT TO GO OVER THAT ONE
MORE TIME?>>SO JUST AS A REMINDER, ON THE
TAX THAT COMES IN, IT IS A TOURISM TAX THAT COMES IN, SO
ABOUT 93 PERCENT COMES FROM OUR RENTAL CAR TAXES OUTSIDE THE
STATE AND 88 PERCENT FOR OUR HOTELS IS FROM OUTSIDE THE
STATE. I THINK ANOTHER IMPORTANT PIECE
TO NOTE IS THE MAYOR AND COUNCIL HAVE RECENTLY HAD CITY STAFF
ADJUST ITEMS THAT ARE ALREADY WITHIN OUR EXISTING BUDGET TO
REPAIR OUR STREETS, SO ALL THE MAJOR ARTERIALS AND THE STREET
REPAIRS WILL HAPPEN OVER THE NEXT FOUR YEARS. THAT’S ALREADY FUNDED. THE CITY COUNCIL WISELY MOVED
THAT FORWARD A COUPLE OF MONTHS AGO AND MADE THAT HAPPEN. AND THEN FINALLY, AND NOT TO BE
ARGUMENTATIVE, JUST TO PROVIDE CLARIFICATION, IS EDUCATION IS
FUNDED BY THE STATE –>>THAT’S CORRECT.>>– NOT BY THE CITY, AND SO
THE REVENUE THAT IS BY THE CITY, WHILE WE LOVE OUR TEACHERS —
[APPLAUSE]>>– AS AN ACADEMIC DEVELOPER,
THERE’S NOTHING MORE IMPORTANT THAN EDUCATION AND DRIVING JOBS
INTO THE COMMUNITY, NOTHING MORE IMPORTANT. BUT OUR REVENUE DOESN’T GO IN
THAT DIRECTION. THAT WOULD BE A CONVERSATION TO
HAVE WITH THE STATE.>>WE CAN CERTAINLY INVITE THE
STATE TO HAVE A PUBLIC MEETING ABOUT EDUCATION. I THINK THAT WOULD BE GREAT FUN. THE NEXT PERSON IS DAVID BURG. DAVID, YOU DIDN’T INDICATE
WHETHER OR NOT YOU WOULD LIKE TO RAISE YOUR QUESTIONS YOURSELF. I CAN READ THEM IF YOU WOULD
LIKE. IS DAVID HERE? OKAY. I’M GOING TO READ HIS QUESTIONS. THE FIRST ONE IS, WHAT HAPPENS
TO THE CURRENT PRACTICE COURT AREA?>>SO THE ANSWER TO THAT IS THE
CURRENT PRACTICE COURT AREA WOULD BE — ACTUALLY, YOU KNOW
WHAT? I’M GOING TO TURN IT OVER TO THE
EXPERT, WHO IS JEREMY, AND NOT ME.>>FIRST OF ALL, THIS IS THE
FIRST TIME I’VE HAD A CHANCE TO TALK. I WANTED TO THANK EVERYBODY WHO
HAS COME OUT TODAY FOR THIS PROCESS. WHETHER YOU’RE FOR THIS
RENOVATION, WHETHER YOU’RE A SUNS FAN, NOT A SUNS FAN,
MERCURY FAN, NOT A MERCURY FAN, AT THE END OF THE DAY, IT’S ALL
ABOUT HAVING THE PUBLIC PARTICIPATE IN THE PROCESS, SO
FIRST OF ALL, THANK YOU FOR DOING THAT. AGAIN, WHETHER YOU’RE FOR IT OR
AGAINST IT, IT’S IMPORTANT FOR EVERYBODY TO COME OUT AND HAVE
THEIR VOICES HEARD, SO THANK YOU. RELATIVE TO THE PRACTICE
FACILITY, SO THE WAY IT CURRENTLY WORKS RIGHT NOW IS
THAT THE — AND IT KIND OF VARIES FROM TEAM TO TEAM ACROSS
THE NBA. THERE ARE SOME TEAMS THAT HAVE
WITHIN THEIR ARENA THEIR PRACTICE FACILITIES, THAT’S KIND
OF THE OLDER WAY OF DOING IT, AND THEN THERE ARE OTHER
SITUATIONS WHERE THE PRACTICE FACILITY FOR THE TEAM IS OFF
SITE IN A DIFFERENT LOCATION. OBVIOUSLY A PRACTICE FACILITY
FOR YOUR PLAYERS IS SOMETHING THAT’S HIGHLY CRITICAL IN TERMS
OF THEIR ABILITY TO DEVELOP, YOUR ABILITY TO ATTRACT FREE
AGENTS, AND YOUR ABILITY TO RETAIN YOUR BEST PLAYERS BECAUSE
OBVIOUSLY THIS IS WHERE THEY WORK DAY IN AND DAY OUT AND NEED
TO COME TOGETHER, HAVE THE BEST THAT WE CAN PROVIDE THEM AND
THEIR MEDICAL TRAINING, THEIR MEDICAL FACILITIES, ALL OF THOSE
THINGS ARE CRITICALLY IMPORTANT. THE WAY THIS BUILDING WAS
ORIGINALLY BUILT WITH THE 550,000-SQUARE-FOOT FOOTPRINT,
WHICH YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW BUT IS ACTUALLY THE SMALLEST FOOTPRINT
IN THE NBA, WE CURRENTLY HAVE OUR PRACTICE FACILITY LOCATED
INSIDE OF IT. SO THE IDEA IS TO TAKE WHAT IS
CURRENTLY BEING UTILIZED AS THE PRACTICE FACILITY AND TEAM AREAS
HERE AND EXTRACT THEM FROM THE BUILDING SO THAT WE CAN
REPURPOSE THOSE AREAS TO HAVE BETTER CIRCULATION, BETTER
STORAGE, BETTER AREAS FOR UTILIZATION OF COMMISSARIES,
THINGS OF THAT NATURE, AND PUT THE BUILDING IN A BETTER
POSITION TO BE UTILIZABLE FOR THE NEXT 17 OR 18 YEARS. THE OTHER PIECE OF IT IS THAT WE
HAVE COMMITTED YOU TO BUILD THE PRACTICE FACILITY WITHIN THE
CITY OF PHOENIX, AND THAT’S A VERY CRITICAL PIECE. SO IF YOU REALLY THINK ABOUT IT,
IF YOU WERE LEASING SQUARE FOOTAGE IN AN APARTMENT OR
COMMERCIAL PROPERTY AND A CERTAIN COMPONENT OF THAT REAL
ESTATE GOT TAKEN AWAY AND MOVED OFF SITE, YOU WOULD USUALLY
EXPECT THAT YOUR RENT WOULD GO DOWN, AND WE’RE DOING THE EXACT
OPPOSITE OF THAT. OUR RENT IS STILL GOING UP EVEN
THOUGH THAT SPACE IS BEING REMOVED, AND THEN WE ARE
BUILDING THE PRACTICE FACILITY ELSEWHERE. AGAIN, IT’S EXTREMELY IMPORTANT
TO HAVE THAT FACILITY TO BE TOP NOTCH, SOMETHING THAT IS A POINT
OF PRIDE, OBVIOUSLY SOMETHING FOR THE COMMUNITY TO BE ABLE TO
UTILIZE AS WELL, AND SOMETHING THAT WE’RE EXCITED TO BE DOING
AS PART OF THIS PROJECT AS WELL.>>THANK YOU. NEXT UP IS DARRELL CHRISTIANSON,
WHO INDICATED HE WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. HI, DARRELL.>>GOOD MORNING. I’M REPRESENTING FOLKS WITH
DISABILITIES, AND THE BUILDING WAS OBVIOUSLY OPENED IN ’92,
WHICH IS ONLY ABOUT TWO YEARS AFTER THE AMERICANS WITH
DISABILITIES ACT WAS PASSED. I KNOW THAT THERE’S BEEN A LOT
OF IMPROVEMENTS AS FAR AS ACCESS, BUT STILL, THIS BUILDING
AS WE’RE SITTING HERE TODAY IS NOT IN FULL COMPLIANCE OF THE
ADA. SO THE ADA COORDINATOR HAS MADE
A COMMITMENT TO NOT ONLY CONTINUING TO DO WHAT IS THE
LETTER OF THE LAW, BUT GOING ABOVE AND BEYOND TO THE SPIRIT
OF THE LAW. AND WHAT THAT MEANS IS THAT IT’S
MORE THAN THE PLUMBING AND THE ELECTRICAL AND ALL THE
BEHIND-THE-SCENES THINGS, BUT IT’S ABOUT HAVING FULL
ACCESS TO ALL THE EVENTS THAT HAPPEN HERE, SUNS OR
CONCERTS, WHATEVER. AND TO POINT OUT TOO THAT THE
NUMBER OF FOLKS WITH PERMANENT DISABILITIES CONTINUES TO GROW,
AND SO WE’RE APPROACHING ONE IN FOUR VALLEY RESIDENTS WHO HAVE A
PERMANENT DISABILITY THAT AFFECT ONE OR MORE MAJOR LIFE ACTIVITY. THAT TRANSLATES TO JUST VALLEY
RESIDENTS TO ABOUT A MILLION PEOPLE. NOW, SO IT’S ABOUT NOT ONLY NOT
MEETING THE LETTER OF THE LAW, BUT GOING ABOVE AND BEYOND. SO THE RENOVATIONS, SOMEBODY HAD
MENTIONED ABOUT WHAT ARE WE GETTING FOR THE BANG FOR THE
BUCK AND WHATNOT, I JUST WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT THE ACCESSIBILITY
IS GOING ABOVE AND BEYOND TO FULL COMPLIANCE OF THE FEDERAL
LAW. THANKS. [APPLAUSE]>>THANK YOU FOR THAT, AND
OBVIOUSLY THAT’S A CRITICAL COMPONENT OF THE RENOVATIONS
GOING FORWARD. PART OF THE PLAN IS OBVIOUSLY TO
ADDRESS THOSE ISSUES BECAUSE OBVIOUSLY WE WANT THIS BUILDING
TO BE SOMETHING THAT IS A POINT OF PRIDE OBVIOUSLY FOR THE
ENTIRE COMMUNITY, AND THAT INCLUDES EVERYBODY, SO MAKING
SURE THAT WE’RE ADDRESSING THOSE ISSUES IS GOING TO BE TOP OF
MIND FOR SURE. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. MIKE ROBINSON INDICATED YOU
WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. MIKE?>>HOW ARE YOU DOING?>>GOOD.>>FIRST BEFORE I SAY ANYTHING
TO YOU GUYS, TO THE MEDIA ON BEHALF OF ALL THE CITIZENS,
REPORT THE NEWS FULLY. GIVE THE FULL STORY, NOT JUST
BREAKING IT DOWN INDIVIDUALLY WHAT YOU GUYS WANT TO REPORT. PLEASE. THIS IS WHY WE HAVE THESE
MEETINGS, BECAUSE YOU GUYS DON’T REPORT THEM FULLY. IF WE KNEW AS TAXPAYERS, WE
WOULD BE ABLE TO NOT HAVE THESE MEETINGS. SECONDLY, I KNOW THE
DIAMONDBACKS AND THE COUNTY REACHED A DEAL. WHY CAN’T WE — WHY CAN’T YOU
GUYS REACH A DEAL SIMILAR TO WHAT THE DIAMONDBACKS AND THE
COUNTY REACHED TO WHERE ANY MONEY REVENUE THAT COMES IN, THE
MAJORITY OF IT GOES TO THE SUNS, AND ALSO WITH THE SUNS, I’VE
BEEN COMING TO THE SUNS GAMES SINCE I WAS A KID. THOSE SEATS OUT THERE, THEY WERE
COMFORTABLE WHEN I WAS A KID, BUT AS YOU CAN SEE, I’M A BIGGER
GUY, SO IT’S A LITTLE TIGHT SQUEEZE. I THINK THERE NEEDS TO BE MORE
COMFORT IN THOSE SEATS AS WELL. SO WHY CAN’T WE DO THAT? WHY CAN’T 100 PERCENT OF THE
MAINTENANCE GO TO THE SUNS SO THAT THE TAXPAYERS AREN’T HAVING
THESE MEETINGS, AND THEN LIKE THAT GUY SAYS, THE SUNS SHOULD
BE OBLIGATED TO STAY IN HERE LONGER, AND IF THEY’RE WANTING
THIS MONEY, DO IT AS LIKE A LOAN LIKE WE WOULD GET TO RENOVATE
OUR HOUSES. MAKE THEM PAY THE MONEY BACK,
EVEN IF IT’S HALF. SOMETHING FOR THEM TO PAY BACK
TO THE CITY IS BETTER THAN NOTHING.>>SO I’LL ANSWER A LITTLE BIT,
THEN I’LL TURN IT OVER TO JEREMY TO ANSWER. SO THE SUNS DO PAY 100 PERCENT
OF THE MAINTENANCE AND OPERATION, THE ROUTINE
MAINTENANCE AND OPERATION OF THIS BUILDING, THEY’VE PAID
ABOUT $300 MILLION TO DATE FOR THE ROUTINE MAINTENANCE AND
OPERATION IN THE BUILDING. THE MAJOR CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS
THAT ARE NEEDED TODAY ARE BECAUSE WE OWN THE BUILDING AS A
CITY, AND WE’RE FUNDING THAT MOVING FORWARD BECAUSE WITH OR
WITHOUT THEM, THE BUILDING STILL NEEDS THOSE RENOVATIONS TO
HAPPEN. ON TOP OF IT, THE SUNS DO PAY US
RENT TO BE IN THE BUILDING, AND THEY’VE PAID US ABOUT
$30 MILLION TO DATE, AND GOING FORWARD OVER THE NEXT 15 YEARS,
THEY’LL PAY US ABOUT $60 MILLION IN RENT. SO NOT ONLY COMING IN FROM THE
TOURISM TAX, BUT MONEY THAT THEN GOES INTO THE GENERAL FUND THAT
CAN BE SPENT FOR OTHER THINGS IS THE WAY THAT STAFF IS PROPOSING
MOVING IT FORWARD. IT’S THE WAY IT’S BEEN SINCE
THEY ORIGINALLY STARTED PLAYING HERE IN ’92, THAT THEY PAY ALL
OPERATIONS AND MAINTENANCE.>>BUT WHY AREN’T THEY GETTING A
LOAN LIKE WE WOULD ON OUR HOUSES? BECAUSE WE’RE STILL — IF WE OWN
A HOUSE OR WE RENT A HOUSE, WE’RE STILL PAYING ON THAT, BUT
ESPECIALLY IF YOU OWN A HOUSE, YOU’RE PAYING YOUR MORTGAGE, AND
IF YOU WANT TO DO ANYTHING OVER AND ABOVE, YOU’VE GOT TO TAKE
OUT THE MONEY THAT’S IN YOUR HOUSE TO PAY FOR RENOVATIONS,
AND YOU STILL HAVE TO PAY THAT BACK.>>30 SECONDS.>>I UNDERSTAND THAT THE
CITY OWNS IT. THE CITY CAN STILL OWN IT, BUT
GIVE MORE FLEXIBILITY TO THE SUNS TO GET THE MONEY FROM ANY
VENUES THAT THEY — ANY EVENTS THAT ARE HELD HERE, THEY KEEP A
LOT OF THAT MONEY, LIKE THE DIAMONDBACKS ARE GETTING, TO
WHERE THEY CAN DO THOSE MAINTENANCE, AND THEY SHOULD BE
HELD OBLIGATED EVERY YEAR LIKE WE ARE FOR WARRANTIES ON OUR A/C
UNITS, WE HAVE TO MEET A CERTAIN STANDARD –>>THAT’S TIME.>>– TO GET IT.>>THANK YOU. DO YOU WANT TO SAY ANY MORE ON
WHY THE LOAN IS NOT QUITE LIKE A HOME LOAN?>>AS YOU LOOK AT IT MOVING
FORWARD, SO THE SUNS WILL PAY $80 MILLION PLUS ANY COST
OVERRUNS OF IMPROVING THE HOUSE FOR THOSE IMPROVEMENTS FOR THOSE
THINGS ABOVE AND BEYOND THAT WE HAVE TO DO JUST TO MAKE THE
BUILDING FUNCTION AND WORK AND BRING IT UP INTO CURRENT
COMPLIANCE, SO THEY WILL BE PAYING AN ADDITIONAL
$80 MILLION. THEY WILL TAKE OUT A LOAN AND
WILL HAVE TO DO THOSE ADDITIONAL IMPROVEMENTS. AS THE CITY WOULD DO WITH THE
$150 MILLION ON THE MORTGAGE THAT WE WOULD TAKE OUT THAT’S
FUNDED BY THE TOURISM TAX, THERE’S ADDITIONAL REVENUE THAT
DOES COME BACK TO US BECAUSE WE DO SHARE IN THE PROFITS AND THE
SUNS DO PAY US RENT ON THE BUILDING, SO OUR STRUCTURE IS A
LITTLE BIT DIFFERENT. ANYBODY WANT TO ADD ANYTHING TO
THAT?>>THANK YOU. I WANT TO TAKE JUST A MOMENT. JASON, IT LOOKS LIKE WE’VE
GOT SOME PLAYERS HERE TODAY. CAN WE TAKE A MINUTE AND
INTRODUCE THOSE FOLKS?>>JAMES, DO YOU WANT TO COME UP
HERE AND MAKE SOME INTRODUCTIONS? [APPLAUSE]>>FIRST OFF, THANK YOU ALL FOR
BEING HERE. THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT TO US
AS AN ORGANIZATION, OUR PLAYERS, OUR STAFF, THE SUNS FAMILY, THE
CITY OF PHOENIX, AND SO WE HAVE PRACTICE TODAY, BUT
DEANDRE AYTON, DEVIN BOOKER AND JAMAL CRAWFORD JUST
WANTED TO SHOW YOU GUYS HOW IMPORTANT THIS IS
TO US, TO THEM. WE’RE INVESTED HERE. THIS MEANS A LOT TO US, AND IT’S
AN IMPORTANT TIME IN THE SUNS FRANCHISE HISTORY, SO WE’RE HERE
AND WE’RE PRESENT, AND WE’RE AVAILABLE. SO I JUST WANTED TO ACKNOWLEDGE
DEANDRE, DEVIN, AND JAMAL. [APPLAUSE]>>THANK YOU ALL FOR BEING HERE. APPRECIATE IT. MARK GOLDSTEIN INDICATED YOU
WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. MARK?>>THANK YOU. GOOD MORNING. HAPPY NEW YEAR, STILL CLOSE TO
THAT TIME.>>YOU TOO.>>I REPRESENT SUSTAINABILITY
PARTNERS. WE’RE A LARGE WALL STREET-FUNDED
ENTITY THAT FINANCES WHAT WE WOULD CALL DEFERRED MAINTENANCE,
WHICH THIS IS, AND WE HAVE WHAT’S CALLED A USAGE FEE MODEL
SUSTAINABILITY AS A SERVICE, SO WE HAVE THE CAPACITY AND THE
INTEREST OF FINANCING THE ENTIRE CITY PORTION VERSUS THE BONDING
THAT YOU WOULD LIKELY DO, AND THAT MAY OFFER THE OPPORTUNITY
TO FINESSE, IT WOULD NOT LIKELY BE CAPEX OR CAPITAL, IT WOULD BE
OFF BALANCE SHEET AND THUS YOUR BORROWING CAPACITY WOULD BE
PRESERVED. SO I HAVE REACHED OUT TO COUNCIL
AND THE MAYOR, TO THE CITY MANAGER, AND WE WOULD LIKE TO
HAVE SOME DIRECT CONVERSATIONS ABOUT WHETHER THERE ARE
OPPORTUNITIES TO FINESSE THE FINANCING IN SUCH A WAY THAT
MONIES ARE INCREASINGLY AVAILABLE THAT MIGHT NOT BE FOR
OTHER COMMUNITY APPLICATIONS. AND I DO HAVE ONE QUESTION,
WHICH IS IN TODAY’S MARKET, WHAT IS THE LIKELY RANGE OF THE
INTEREST THAT WOULD BE PAID ON A BOND, I BELIEVE YOU’RE LOOKING
AT 18-YEAR BOND, WHAT IS THE KIND OF INTEREST THAT THE MARKET
MIGHT REQUIRE?>>SO I ASSUME YOU’RE TALKING
ABOUT THE INTEREST RATE THAT WE WOULD BE ANTICIPATING ON THIS?>>YEAH.>>YOU KNOW, I’M
ULTRA-CONSERVATIVE, AND AS YOU KNOW, I HAVEN’T GIVEN RECENT
EVENTS OF THE MARKET — HAS NOT BEEN TAKEN INTO CONSIDERATION,
BUT I’M GUESSING WE’RE GOING TO BE A TAXABLE BOND, SO
PROBABLY AROUND 5.5 TO 6 PERCENT AS A RATE. IF THIS GOES FORWARD, WE WOULD
LOOK AT ALL FINANCING OPTIONS, THAT’S WHAT WE DO. WE HAVE NOT LOCKED THAT IN. THAT’S JUST FOR MAKING
ASSUMPTIONS IN THE FINANCIAL FORECAST.>>GREAT. WE WOULD LOOK FORWARD TO
HOPEFULLY SOME CONVERSATIONS ABOUT THE OPTIONS WE COULD
PROVIDE IN THAT MANNER. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. NEXT, AND I APOLOGIZE AHEAD OF
TIME BECAUSE I’M PROBABLY GOING TO BUTCHER THIS NAME. BOZ OR BOAZ WHITDECK.>>BOAZ.>>BOAZ. THANK YOU.>>GOOD MORNING, EVERYBODY. HOW ARE YOU GUYS DOING? GOOD. MY NAME IS BOAZ WHITDECK. I’M A PHOENIX CITY RESIDENT, AND
I’M ALSO THE DEPUTY STATE DIRECTOR OF THE ARIZONA CHAPTER
OF AMERICANS FOR PROSPERITY, A GRASSROOTS ORGANIZATION THAT’S
COMMITTED TO ADVANCING POLICIES THAT IMPROVE THE LIVES OF ALL
ARIZONANS, AND WE HAVE NEARLY 90,000 ACTIVISTS THROUGHOUT THE
STATE, MOST OF THEM BEING IN THE CITY OF PHOENIX, AND WE STRONGLY
ENCOURAGE THE PHOENIX CITY COUNCIL TO REJECT WHAT WE WOULD
CALL AN EGREGIOUS EXAMPLE OF CORPORATE WELFARE THAT INCLUDES
$150 MILLION OF TAXPAYER FUNDS.>>LET’S BE RESPECTFUL TODAY,
PLEASE.>>THANK YOU. SO OUR ORGANIZATION POSES
CORPORATE WELFARE AS A WHOLE, AND STADIUM SUBSIDIES ARE, WE
THINK, A VERY GOOD EXAMPLE OF GOVERNMENT PICKING WINNERS AND
LOSERS IN THE PRIVATE MARKETPLACE. SO BETWEEN — AND FOR HISTORY,
AND I DON’T KNOW IF THIS WASN’T MENTIONED FOR A REASON, BUT
BETWEEN THE PERIODS OF 2001 AND 2004, THE CITY OF PHOENIX GAVE
THE SUNS A $67 MILLION CHECK FOR RENOVATIONS FOR THIS EXACT
ARENA, AND SO WE’RE ASKING WHERE DOES IT STOP, AND YOU ANSWERED
SOME OF THOSE QUESTIONS TODAY, HOW LONG WILL PHOENIX TAXPAYERS
BE ON THE HOOK FOR THIS PRIVATE SPACE OR FOR THIS PRIVATE TEAM
SPACE? AND IN THE PROPOSED DEAL, ONE OF
THE FACTS THAT WASN’T MENTIONED IS THE CITY OF PHOENIX WOULD
COVER 65 PERCENT OF RENOVATION COSTS. COMPARED TO ALL THE OTHER DEALS
THAT HAVE HAPPENED RECENTLY IN OTHER TAXPAYER-FUNDED OR
PRIVATELY-FUNDED THINGS, THIS IS THE SECOND HIGHEST PROPORTION,
AND WE THINK THAT THAT IS A BAD DEAL FOR THE CITY OF PHOENIX. AND VERY BASICALLY, WHAT OUR
BELIEF SYSTEM IS, IS THAT IT’S NOT THE ROLE OF GOVERNMENT TO
FUND A PRIVATE COMPANY, AN ORGANIZATION, AN ENTERTAINMENT
VENUE, OR ANY SPORTS TEAM OF ANY KIND, AND THAT ONE OF THE THINGS
THAT OTHER PEOPLE HAVE SAID TODAY AND THAT I THINK IT’S
IMPORTANT TO REALIZE IS THAT WHERE COULD THESE TAXPAYER FUNDS
GO? WHERE ELSE COULD THIS PROVIDE? COULD THEY GO BACK TO THE
TAXPAYERS THEMSELVES? COULD THEY PROVIDE OTHER
NECESSARY SERVICES FOR THE CITY? THAT IS SOMETHING THAT ONE OF
THE THINGS THAT I WAS DOING SOME RESEARCH TODAY, AND ONE EXAMPLE
IS THE OWNER AND CEO OF THE GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS, JOE
LACOB, HE WAS SAYING THIS DURING THE GROUNDBREAKING OF A
PRIVATELY-FINANCED CHASE CENTER IN SAN FRANCISCO, HE
SAYS, QUOTE, HONESTLY, I DON’T WANT TO TAKE MONEY
FROM THE PUBLIC AND THEN SOMEONE SAY TO ME WE CAN’T
AFFORD SCHOOLS OR WE CAN’T AFFORD POLICE OR WE
CAN’T AFFORD –>>30 SECONDS.>>– FIRE BECAUSE OF A SPORTS
TEAM. SO I THINK WE NEED TO LOOK AT
OTHER OPTIONS OF HOW WE CAN USE THIS MONEY BECAUSE IT’S NOT FAIR
FOR SPECIFIC BUSINESSES AND SPECIFIC ENTERTAINMENT
INDUSTRIES TO GET SUBSIDIES. AND SO THAT IS ONE OF THE THINGS
THAT WE ARE SAYING THIS IS NOT THE PROPER ROLE OF GOVERNMENT. AND SO OUR ACTIVISTS ARE
DEDICATED TO EDUCATING THE PUBLIC ABOUT THIS DEAL. IF YOU AGREE WITH US, YOU CAN
LOOK ON SNAPCHAT, WE HAVE A SNAPCHAT FILTER –>>YOUR TIME IS UP, BOAZ.>>– AND THEN GO TO
STOPARENAWELFARE.COM.>>THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] THE NEXT QUESTION IS FROM R. KYLE FOXCROFT, WHO
PREFERS NOT TO SPEAK. THE QUESTIONS ARE, FIRST OF ALL,
HOW WILL THE PRACTICE FACILITY LOCATION BE CHOSEN?>>SO OBVIOUSLY WE’RE LOOKING,
FIRST OF ALL, AS I SAID EARLIER, AS PART OF THE ARRANGEMENT, IT
WILL BE LOCATED SOMEWHERE IN THE CITY OF PHOENIX. AT THIS TIME WE’RE OBVIOUSLY
LOOKING AT A VARIETY OF DIFFERENT LOCATIONS AND HAVE NOT
LANDED ON ONE IN PARTICULAR. THINGS THAT ARE OBVIOUSLY
IMPORTANT TO A DECISION TO THAT IS FIRST AND FOREMOST THE COST. SECONDARILY, BUT ALSO JUST AS
IMPORTANT IS WHAT DOES THE ACCESS LOOK LIKE BETWEEN WHERE
THE ARENA IS LOCATED AND WHERE THE PRACTICE FACILITY IS AT,
BECAUSE OBVIOUSLY YOU WOULD NEED IT TO BE WITHIN A REASONABLE
LOCATION SOMEPLACE THAT IS IN A GOOD SPOT, COULD BE UTILIZED
ALSO FOR THE PUBLIC, TO THE EXTENT THAT THAT’S PART OF IT. SO THERE’S A LOT OF
CONSIDERATIONS THAT ARE GOING TO GO INTO WHERE WE ULTIMATELY
PLACE THE PRACTICE FACILITY, BUT IT’S OBVIOUSLY SOMETHING THAT
WE’RE LOOKING AT HARD AND ONE THAT WHEN THE TIME COMES THAT
WE’VE LAND ODD A PLACE WE’LL CERTAINLY BE LETTING EVERYBODY
KNOW ABOUT THAT.>>WONDERFUL. AND HANG ONTO THE MIC BECAUSE
THERE’S A SECOND PART TO THAT QUESTION. WILL THERE BE AN EFFORT TO FIND
A SITE THAT CAN HELP REVITALIZE THE COMMUNITY AROUND IT?>>I THINK WE’LL LOOK AT ALL
THOSE OPTIONS. I THINK WHEN YOU’RE LOOKING AT
DOING AN INVESTMENT OF THAT MAGNITUDE, YOU WANT TO MAKE SURE
THAT YOU’RE LOOKING AT IT HOLISTICALLY. YOU WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT,
AGAIN, WHERE IT’S BEING PLACED WORKS FUNCTIONALLY FOR YOU AND
FOR THE PURPOSES OF THE BUILDING, BUT AT THE SAME TIME
LIKE ANY OTHER MAJOR CONSTRUCTION PROJECT OR MAJOR
PROJECT LIKE THAT, YOU NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT IT FITS WITHIN
ITS SURROUNDINGS AND ALSO HAS A BENEFIT TO THE SURROUNDINGS AS
WELL, SO THOSE ARE ALL CONSIDERATIONS WE’LL BE TAKING
INTO ACCOUNT.>>THANK YOU. CHRIS KAUFMAN INDICATED YOU
WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. CHRIS? THERE WE GO. DROVE IN FROM THE CITY OF
GOODYEAR. THANKS FOR JOINING US TODAY. YOU’VE GOT SOMEBODY RIGHT BEHIND
YOU. THERE YOU GO.>>HI. I’M WITH HELPING HANDS FOR
SINGLE MOMS, AND I WOULD LIKE TO ADDRESS SOMETHING THAT WAS SAID
EARLIER ABOUT HOW GENUINE THE SUNS ARE AS A COMMUNITY PARTNER. I CAN SPEAK FIRSTHAND BECAUSE
I’VE SEEN IT. WE’VE BEEN CALLED MANY TIMES TO
COME DOWN TO THIS FACILITY AND FOR THE FAMILIES IN OUR PROGRAM,
THANKSGIVING DINNERS OR MOTHER’S DAY EVENT FOR THE KIDS, WE HELD
A FUNDRAISER HERE AT NO CHARGE, AND ROBERT SARVER GAVE US A
GENEROUS DONATION. WE’VE RECEIVED OVER 1,000
TICKETS OVER THE YEARS. THE SUNS HAVE BEEN THE LARGEST
FUNDER FOR OUR HOLIDAY PROGRAM, WHICH BRINGS IN $18,000 TO
$20,000 IN GIFTS EACH YEAR. AND OUR MOMS ARE ALL SINGLE MOMS
GOING TO COLLEGE, TRYING TO RAISE THEIR FAMILIES, AND I CAN
TELL YOU, I SEE THEIR FACES, WHEN THEY COME DOWN HERE TO GET
TICKETS AND THEY CAN TAKE THEIR KIDS OUT FOR THE EVENING FOR A
FREE EVENT, BE DOWN HERE TO SEE THE PLAYERS, AND THEY’VE GOTTEN
TO MEET THE PLAYERS BEFORE OR WHERE THEY COME TO THANKSGIVING
EVENTS, IT MEANS A LOT TO THESE SINGLE MOMS TRYING TO GO TO
COLLEGE. AND LEST ANYBODY HERE SAY, WELL,
ISN’T THAT NICE, THE SUNS THROW SOME FUN EVENTS FOR SOME PEOPLE,
SINCE THE SUNS STARTED HELPING US, 230 SINGLE MOMS HAVE
GRADUATED FROM COLLEGE IN OUR PROGRAM, LEFT POVERTY, THEY ARE
NOW NURSES AND ACCOUNTANTS AND I.T. WORKERS AND EDUCATORS, AND
THEY ARE OUT MAKING A DIFFERENCE. AND YOU GUYS MADE, THE SUNS MADE
A DIFFERENCE IN OUR LIVES, AND IT’S COMING BACK TO THE
COMMUNITY BECAUSE IF SOMEBODY HERE GOES TO A HOSPITAL IN
PHOENIX, WE HAVE OVER 150 NURSES OUT RIGHT
TODAY, SINGLE-MOM NURSING-STUDENT GRADUATES,
YOU’LL BE HELPED BY ONE. THANK YOU, PHOENIX SUNS, I
SUPPORT YOU STAYING HERE. [APPLAUSE]>>THANK YOU. ANDREW MARWICK INDICATED YOU
WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK. HI, ANDREW.>>YES. FIRST OF ALL, CLEARING UP IN
TERMS OF THE PRACTICE FACILITY, THE CHICAGO BULLS HAD A PRACTICE
FACILITY ABOUT THE SAME AGE AS THIS BUILDING, 25 MILES NORTH OF
THE UNITED CENTER. THEY DECIDED THAT WAS OBSOLETE,
AND THEY BUILT A NEW ONE. SO THE SUNS WILL NEED A NEW
PRACTICE FACILITY ANYWAY. IN TERMS OF OBSOLESCENCE, FOR
EXAMPLE, THE CENTURY LIBRARY AT HIGHLAND AND 18th STREET IS
CLEARLY OBSOLETE. THE CITY OF PHOENIX OWNS A LOT
OF OBSOLETE FACILITIES. A LOT OF CITIES HAVE PUT A
FORTUNE INTO WATER MAIN REPLACEMENTS. THE CITY OF PHOENIX WILL
PROBABLY BE LOOKING AT THAT IN THE UPCOMING YEARS. THE NBA AVERAGE FRANCHISE
RECENTLY HAS BEEN GOING FOR ABOUT $2 BILLION. THE SUNS CAN AFFORD A LOT OF
THIS ON THEIR OWN. THE VALUE OF THE FRANCHISES IN
THE NBA HAS BEEN DOUBLING EVERY FIVE TO TEN YEARS. AS FAR AS LEAVING THE PHOENIX
MARKET, I THINK IT’S A BLUFF. THE PHOENIX MARKET IN THE 2030s
WILL BE ABOUT 7 TO 8 MILLION PEOPLE IN THE PHOENIX AREA. THE NBA IS NOT GOING TO LEAVE
THAT KIND OF MARKET FOR, SAY, KANSAS CITY OR OLIVO. THE NBA HAS NOT MADE A SPECIFIC
THREAT. ADAM SILVER HAS NOT COME HERE
AND MADE A SPECIFIC THREAT. HE’S MADE A FEW VERY VAGUE
STATEMENTS ABOUT THE SUNS LEAVING. HOWEVER, MILWAUKEE, A MUCH
SMALLER MARKET, ADAM SILVER WENT TO THE BRADLEY CENTER IN
MILWAUKEE, LOOKED AT THE FACILITY, AND MADE A VERY
SPECIFIC THREAT, EITHER BY A CERTAIN TIME THE CITY OF
MILWAUKEE WOULD BUILD A NEW ARENA, OR THE BUCKS WOULD BE
SOLD TO SOMEONE WHO WOULD MOVE THE TEAM OUT OF MILWAUKEE. HE WAS VERY, VERY SPECIFIC ABOUT
THAT. DOWNTOWN ST. LOUIS, THE CITY OF
ST. LOUIS STILL HAS WELL OVER $100 MILLION IN DEBT, CITY AND
COUNTY OF ST. LOUIS, ON THE EDWARD JONES DOME. THE RAMS LEFT. PEOPLE DO NOT GO DOWNTOWN TO
ST. LOUIS. PHOENIX IS DOWN ABOUT
1,000 POLICE OFFICERS. PEOPLE DO NOT GO DOWNTOWN
ST. LOUIS BECAUSE THERE’S CARJACKINGS, MUGGINGS,
SHOOTINGS, AND IT’S MUCH MORE IMPORTANT FOR PEOPLE TO BE IN
DOWNTOWN TO BE SAFE AND HAVING THE POLICE PRESENCE THAT MAKE
PEOPLE FEEL SAFE IN AN AREA IS MUCH MORE IMPORTANT THAN A
FANCIER FACILITY. IN TERMS OF THE SALES TAX, THERE
WAS A LOT BROUGHT UP ABOUT IT, THIS AS BEING A TOURISM TAX. THE CITY OF PHOENIX PUT ON A
4/10 OF A PERCENT TRANSPORTATION TAX. THAT’S ONE OF THE REASONS THE
CITY OF PHOENIX –>>YOU HAVE 30 SECONDS, ANDREW.>>THAT IS MUCH MORE
APPROPRIATE. THE ARIZONA CONSTITUTION SAYS
THE TAXES ON FUEL, MOTOR VEHICLES MUST GO TO PAYING FOR
THE STREETS AND MUST GO TO ADOT. THAT MONEY IS MUCH MORE
APPROPRIATE TO GO TO THE TRANSPORTATION NEEDS OF THE
CITY. THERE’S NOT ENOUGH EXPRESS
BUSES, FOR EXAMPLE. THAT’S A MUCH MORE APPROPRIATE
PLACE FOR THIS MONEY AND THIS RENTAL CAR TAX, FOR EXAMPLE, TO
GO THAN TO BUILD A — RENOVATE THE ARENA FOR THIS PRIVATE
ENTERPRISE.>>THANK YOU, ANDREW. LET’S SEE. MARCEL MASON, I HOPE I GOT THAT
RIGHT, INDICATED WOULD PREFER NOT TO SPEAK, BUT THE QUESTION
TO THE SUNS AND PROBABLY TO THE CITY OF PHOENIX TOO, ARE THERE
STATISTICS AND DATA AVAILABLE TO REPORT ON THE CITY’S EXPENSES TO
HOST THE ALL-STAR GAME A FEW YEARS AGO VERSUS THE RETURN ON
INVESTMENT?>>I WILL TURN THAT OVER TO
JOHN. JOHN? YOU GUYS.>>SO A COUPLE THINGS RELATIVE
TO OUR ALL-STAR GAME. ON AVERAGE, AND IT CAN VARY, BUT
IN TERMS OF ECONOMIC IMPACT, WHICH HAPPENS OVER THE PERIOD OF
TIME THE ALL-STAR WEEKEND, YOU’RE LOOKING AT ABOUT $70
MILLION TO $90 MILLION IN DIRECT ECONOMIC IMPACT COMING INTO THE
CITY THAT IS HOSTING IT, AN NBA ALL-STAR. FOR US TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR AN
ALL-STAR GAME, THE SIMPLE FACT IS THE NBA HAS A SET OF
STANDARDS THAT HAS TO BE FOLLOWED, AND THIS BUILDING
CURRENTLY DOES NOT MEET THOSE STANDARDS, SO WE WOULD NOT BE
ELIGIBLE FOR AN ALL-STAR GAME. ALTHOUGH THE WAY WE WORK ACROSS
THE LEAGUE IS THEY DON’T SET DATES UNTIL WE KNOW THAT THE
BUILDING IS READY, THE REALITY IS ONCE WE GET INTO A POSITION
WHERE THE BUILDING HAS BEEN RENOVATED, AN ALL-STAR GAME
WOULD FOLLOW THERE RELATIVELY QUICKLY, SO IT’S SOMETHING THAT
WE COULD ALL BE PRETTY EXCITED ABOUT BECAUSE OBVIOUSLY THAT
DOES GENERATE A SIGNIFICANT AMOUNT OF DOLLARS TO THE CITY OF
PHOENIX AND TO THE MARKET. RELATIVE TO EXPENSES, NORMALLY
THE WAY THAT THE DEAL WORKS, AND MY COLLEAGUE JIM HERE CAN ALSO
ADD TO SOME OF THE ECONOMIC ANALYSIS, BUT ESSENTIALLY WHAT
THE CITY CONTRIBUTES NORMALLY IS POLICE, SECURITY, TRAFFIC ISSUES
THAT THEY HELP RESOLVE, PERMITTING, THINGS LIKE THAT. THERE IS A WAIVER, I BELIEVE, OF
SOME SALES TAX THAT HAPPENS, BUT OFFSETTING THAT IS OBVIOUSLY THE
AMOUNT OF REVENUE THAT’S GENERATED FROM THAT, THAT
ACTIVITY AS WELL, NOT TO MENTION JUST IN TERMS OF YOU THINK ABOUT
THE MARKETING AND BRANDING ASPECT FOR THE CITY OF PHOENIX
ITSELF, YOU THINK ABOUT THE IMPACT AND RECOGNITION THAT THIS
MARKET HAS GOTTEN FROM HAVING THINGS LIKE MLB ALL-STAR, FROM
HAVING SUPER BOWLS HERE, FROM HAVING ALL THESE MAJOR EVENTS
THAT IT HAS TAKEN THIS ENTIRE COMMUNITY AND OBVIOUSLY RAISED
ITS PROFILE SIGNIFICANTLY AS A PREMIER SPORTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
DESTINATION ACROSS THE WORLD. SO WHEN YOU LOOK AT THAT IMPACT
FOR THE ENTIRE COMMUNITY, NOT JUST THE CITY OF PHOENIX BUT THE
ENTIRE VALLEY AND THE STATE, YOU START TO REALIZE PRETTY QUICKLY
HOW IMPORTANT THOSE BIG EVENTS ARE.>>THANK YOU. CHANEL PALL INDICATED YOU WOULD
LIKE TO SPEAK.>>HELLO. FIRST OF ALL, I WOULD LIKE TO
THANK YOU FOR HOSTING THIS COMMUNITY FORUM FOR US TO COME
AND GET EDUCATED BECAUSE I WILL ADMIT THAT I CAME IN WITH THE
PRECONCEIVED NOTION AND DID NOT HAVE ALL OF THE FACTS TO
UNDERSTAND HOW THIS PROCESS ACTUALLY WORKS, AND AFTER
GATHERING SOME OF THE INFORMATION, SO FIRST OF ALL —
DID I SAY I WAS A DISTRICT 8 RESIDENT? DISTRICT 8 RESIDENT. ALSO I’M AN ELECTED SCHOOL BOARD
MEMBER, AND I ALSO HAVE HAD TO VOTE ON WHETHER WE’RE GOING TO
LEASE A BUILDING OR HAVE BLIGHT WITHIN THE COMMUNITY. SO THESE SESSIONS HAVE A LOT OF
GREAT INFORMATION THAT WE NEED TO KNOW. AND FROM THE INFORMATION THAT
WAS SHARED, I AM ALSO IN AGREEMENT THAT WE SHOULD
RENOVATE THE STADIUM. I UNDERSTAND HOW BUILDINGS CAN
DECAY AND HOW THEY NEED TO BE UPDATED FOR THINGS THAT WE
CANNOT SEE. GOING FORWARD, I WOULD LIKE TO
RECOMMEND, THOUGH, THAT THE CITY DOES ADD EXTRA COMMUNITY
SESSIONS TO PARTS OF OUR COMMUNITY THAT MAY NOT HAVE
ACCESS TO COME DOWNTOWN, WHICH IS ALTA VISTA SENIOR CENTER IN
SOUTH PHOENIX AND ALSO IN MY DISTRICT IN THE BALTS SCHOOL
DISTRICT, I WOULD ASK THAT YOU WOULD LOOK AT THE BALTS
COMMUNITY CENTER TO HOST A MEETING SO WE CAN SHARE
INFORMATION WITH ALL OF THE RESIDENTS. FROM THE INFORMATION, AGAIN,
THAT WAS SHARED, THIS IS SOMETHING THAT I AM IN AGREEMENT
WITH. I APPRECIATE THE OPPORTUNITY FOR
NONPROFITS IN THE COMMUNITY TO BE INTEGRATED, BUT IN THE SPIRIT
OF TRANSPARENCY, I WOULD ALSO LIKE TO SEE EXACTLY WHERE IS THE
FUNDING GOING. YOU KIND OF GAVE US, PROVIDED A
SNAPSHOT, BUT IF THE CITY COUNCIL COULD MAKE AVAILABLE
WHERE THE MONEY IS — EXACTLY WHERE THE MONEY IS BEING
ALLOCATED TO, THAT WILL ALSO HELP RESIDENTS FEEL A LITTLE BIT
MORE BETTER ABOUT THE PROCESS. AND I ALSO WANT TO GIVE A SHOUT
OUT TO MY COMRADES JAY AND PATRICK FOR STEPPING UP BECAUSE
THEIR HEARTS ARE IN THE RIGHT PLACE. I FEEL AS IF WE DO NEED TO THINK
ABOUT SOME MORE PERTINENT ISSUES, BUT THIS ISSUE IS COMING
FORTH TO THE CITY COUNCIL, AND IT IS VERY IMPERATIVE THAT WE
HAVE A PUBLIC DISCUSSION. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU.>>IF I COULD JUST A MOMENT —
[APPLAUSE] — JUST YOU MADE GREAT POINTS. SO A COUPLE DIFFERENT THINGS. THIS IS ONE OF FIVE COMMUNITY
MEETINGS, SO MONDAY, TUESDAY, WEDNESDAY NIGHT THERE WILL BE A
COMMUNITY MEETING AT THE SOUTH MOUNTAIN COMMUNITY CENTER. IT’S AT ALTA VISTA AND CENTRAL,
SO IT’S JUST SOUTH OF SOUTHERN, JUST EAST OF CENTRAL. SO IT WILL BE THERE. WE’LL HAVE PARADISE VALLEY
VILLAGE COMMUNITY CENTER ON MONDAY NIGHT. THAT’S AT 40th STREET AND BELL. WE’LL HAVE BUFF AT 35th AVENUE
AND PINNACLE PEAK, AND THEN DESERT WEST IN WEST PHOENIX WILL
BE OUR FINAL COMMUNITY MEETING IN THE COMMUNITY. IF THERE’S ANY PLACES YOU WOULD
LIKE US TO SPEAK OR YOU THINK WE SHOULD BE, WE’RE HAPPY TO DO IT. SO MAKE SURE YOU AND I CONNECT
AFTERWARDS, AND WE CAN WORK WITH THE CITY COUNCIL TO MAKE SURE
THAT WE COVER ANYTHING YOU NEED US TO COVER.>>THANK YOU.>>JUST A COUPLE OF REMINDERS. IF ANYONE HAS A COMMENT BUT HAS
NOT YET SUBMITTED A COMMENT CARD, PLEASE JUST RAISE YOUR
HAND, AND SOMEONE WILL COME GET THAT. WE ARE STARTING TO MOVING INTO
SOME REPETITION OF INFORMATION THAT’S ALREADY BEEN SHARED AND
QUESTIONS THAT HAVE ALREADY BEEN ANSWERED. SO WHEN YOU HEAR YOUR NAME
CALLED, IF YOU WOULD PREFER THAT I JUST READ YOUR COMMENT OR
QUESTION INTO THE RECORD, I’M HAPPY TO DO SO. NEXT UP IS PAUL ROWE, WHO
INDICATED HE WOULD NOT LIKE TO SPEAK. THE COMMENT HE PROVIDED TO US
IS, THE ROLE OF CITY GOVERNMENT IS TO PROVIDE ESSENTIAL SERVICES
TO ITS CONSTITUENTS, NOT TO SUBSIDIZE PRIVATELY-OWNED SPORTS
ENTITIES. STEVE BETZ INDICATED YOU WOULD
LIKE TO SPEAK. STEVE?>>GOOD MORNING. THANK YOU FOR LETTING ME TALK. I’VE BEEN IN COMMERCIAL REAL
ESTATE MY ENTIRE CAREER, AND TO ME — AND MS. MACKAY AND JEREMY
DID A NICE JOB OF HIGHLIGHTING THIS — THIS IS JUST A SIMPLE
SORT OF LANDLORD/TENANT SITUATION, AND THIS IS OUR
BUILDING, AND THIS HAS BEEN MENTIONED BY SEVERAL OTHER
SPEAKERS, AND WE WOULD HAVE TO BE RENOVATING THIS ONE WAY OR
ANOTHER. IT’S ALMOST 30 YEARS OLD. IT’S GOT DEFERRED MAINTENANCE
ISSUES. WE NEED TO MAKE THESE RENOVATION
CHANGES TO THE BUILDING ONE WAY OR THE OTHER, AND WE NEED TO DO
THIS TO SECURE AN ANCHOR TENANT. THIS IS SOMETHING THAT WE WOULD
BE DOING IN THE PRIVATE SECTOR IF THIS WERE A COMMERCIAL
BUILDING THAT WE OWNED FOR PROFIT FOR COMMERCIAL
DEVELOPMENT PURPOSES. SO I THINK IF YOU LOOK AT IT,
JUST SET IT OUTSIDE THE POLITICS OF IT AND LOOK AT IT AS AN ASSET
THAT WE THE PUBLIC, WE THE CITY OWN, I THINK IT’S A PRETTY EASY
DECISION TO LOOK AT. AND IN THIS SITUATION, WE — AND
JEREMY SORT OF WENT THROUGH THIS — ALL WE’RE PUTTING
INTO IS INFRASTRUCTURE. WE’RE PUTTING MONEY, OUR MONEY,
OUR PUBLIC MONEY INTO THE INFRASTRUCTURE. AND THE BEST THING ABOUT THIS IS
THAT THE MONEY IS COMING FROM TOURISM TAXES. IT WAS SOMETHING THAT WE WERE
SMART TO PUT IN PLACE WHEN WE FIRST PUT THIS BUILDING
TOGETHER. SO USING OTHER PEOPLE’S, USING
TOURISM DOLLARS TO HELP US TO RENOVATE THIS TO SECURE OUR
ANCHOR TENANT SORT OF MAKES THIS A NO-BRAINER, FROM MY POINT OF
VIEW. BUT THE OTHER POINT THAT AS I’M
HEARING OTHER PEOPLE SPEAK TO THIS IS IT’S NOT AN EITHER/OR. IT’S NOT LIKE SOMETHING WE CAN
DO THIS OR WE DO SOMETHING ELSE. THIS BUILDING GENERATES REAL
REVENUE. IT GENERATES REVENUE THAT WE
SHARE IN THE PROFITS FROM THE BUILDING, BUT IT ALSO GENERATES
REAL SALES TAXES TO THE CITY. WE CAN TAKE THOSE MONEY, MONEY
FROM THE REVENUE OF THE BUILDING, MONEY FROM THE SALES
TAXES, AND WE CAN PUT IT INTO THINGS LIKE LIBRARIES, LIKE
STREETS, LIKE POLICE AND FIRE. SO WE CAN DO BOTH. THIS IS A YES, WE OUGHT TO DO
THIS FOR THE RIGHT — FOR DOWNTOWN, WE CAN DO THIS FOR
TOURISM, WE CAN DO THIS TO CREATE ECONOMIC ACTIVITY, AND WE
CAN TAKE THE REVENUES FROM THIS BUILDING AND WE CAN DO THE RIGHT
THINGS FOR THE PUBLIC NEEDS AND PUBLIC BENEFITS THAT WE NEED. SO THANK YOU VERY MUCH. I’M VERY MUCH IN SUPPORT OF
THIS.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] MIKE DWYER IS NEXT. MIKE, YOU WOULD STILL LIKE TO
SPEAK? YOUR TOPIC HAS — OKAY, COME ON
DOWN.>>THANK YOU. I AM DEPRESSED THAT THERE’S NOT
MORE CITY COUNCIL PEOPLE HERE, CONSIDERING HOW IMPORTANT THIS
IS.>>THERE ARE FIVE MORE — YES, A
TOTAL OF FIVE MORE MEETINGS THIS WEEK.>>I UNDERSTAND. I WORKED FOR GOVERNMENT. I KNOW HOW IT GOES.>>ALL RIGHT.>>I THINK PART OF THE ISSUE IS
YOU CAN’T COUNTER ALL THE ARGUMENTS HERE IN THREE MINUTES. I’M GOING TO TRY TO HIT A FEW
HIGH POINTS. THERE’S A QUESTION ABOUT THE SFF
FUND, WHICH IS THIS GREAT FUND THEY’RE TALKING ABOUT THAT’S
PAID FOR BY OUT-OF-STATE PEOPLE, TOURISM TAX, IF YOU WANT TO CALL
IT THAT. THE REALITY IS AND INTERESTINGLY
I HAVE A MEMO AUTHORED BY MISS OLSON RIGHT HERE
THAT SAYS AFTER THE FUNDS ARE USED FOR DEBT
SERVICE, CITY COUNCIL CAN USE REMAINING FUNDS FOR
ANYTHING THAT’S LEGAL: COPS, FIREFIGHTERS, ROADS, THOSE
THINGS THAT THE COMMUNITY NEEDS. SO THE WE’RE TALKING ABOUT A
PRIORITY. THERE WAS A GENTLEMAN UP HERE
EARLIER TALKING ABOUT WHAT ARE THE PRIORITIES OF CITY
GOVERNMENT. SO I THINK IT’S MISLEADING WHEN
THE PANEL SAYS, WELL, IT’S GOING TO BE PAID FOR BY OUT-OF-STATE
PEOPLE, WHEN THE REALITY IS THAT’S A FUNDING SOURCE FOR THE
CITY GOVERNMENT THAT CAN BE USED FOR THINGS THAT BENEFIT THE
COMMUNITY AS A WHOLE. SO DON’T BE MISLED BY THAT. THERE’S OTHER THINGS THAT I TAKE
EXCEPTION TO, YOU SAYING THAT IF WE DID SELL THE BUILDING, WHICH
PERSONALLY I THINK THE CITY GOVERNMENT SHOULD DIVEST ITSELF
FROM THIS COMPLETELY, JUST LIKE THE SHERATON WHICH WE ENDED UP
TAKING, I BELIEVE, A $40 MILLION HIT ON, THE TGEN BUILDING, WE
MADE SOME DECISIONS AT THE TIME WHEN THIS WAS BUILT, CITY
SUPPORT WAS NEEDED TO BRING SOMETHING BACK TO DOWNTOWN. BUT WE DON’T NEED IT ANYMORE. I TELL YOU WHAT THE LIFEBLOOD OF
THE CITY DOWN — IS THE COLLEGES, IS THE UNIVERSITIES. WE HAVE THE ORPHEUM, WE HAVE
OTHER ENTERTAINMENT VENUES. SO TO ASSUME THAT IF THIS WASN’T
OCCUPIED BY THE SUNS OR ANYBODY ELSE DOWNTOWN WOULD CRUMBLE I
THINK IS A FALLACY. I TAKE EXCEPTION TO YOUR
ARGUMENT THAT IT TAKES 30 YEARS TO DEVELOP A BLOCK. I TELL YOU WHAT, LET’S LOOK AT
THE BIOMEDICAL CAMPUS ON 5th STREET. BY 2013, THEY HAD A $1.3 BILLION
INDIRECT IMPACT ON THE ECONOMY HERE. THE SUNS, WE’RE SAYING — OR NOT
THE SUNS, THE STADIUM IS JUST $331 MILLION ANNUALLY. BY 2025, WHAT DO THEY EXPECT? 2025, THEY EXPECT THAT MEDICAL
CAMPUS $3.1 BILLION IMPACT. TALK ABOUT JOBS? WHAT’S THE MEDICAL CAMPUS DO
NOW? 9,000 JOBS. PROJECTED TO DO 25,000. WHAT ARE WE TALKING ABOUT HERE? HALF OF THEM ARE PART-TIME? NOT THAT THAT’S NOT IMPORTANT,
BUT I THINK WHAT THE CITY SHOULD DO IS LOOK INTO THINGS WHERE
HERE THEY PARTNERED WITH PRIVATE COMPANIES, WE DIDN’T SUBSIDIZE
THEM –>>YOU HAVE 30 SECONDS.>>– WE CREATED A GREAT THING. AND 30 SECONDS IS A LONG TIME. THANKS FOR TELLING ME.>>ABSOLUTELY.>>SO ALL I’M SAYING IS
PERSONALLY, WE SHOULD DIVEST. WE HAVE AN ORGANIZATION THAT’S
VALUED BY FORBES AT $1.28 BILLION THAT SAYS
THEY ANNUALLY GET 200-PLUS MILLION DOLLARS
IN GATE REVENUE. I LIKE HOW WE KEEP TALKING ABOUT
HOW OVER 27 YEARS THEY SPENT $300 MILLION ON REVENUE — I
MEAN ON MAINTENANCE, BUT HOW MUCH DID THEY MAKE OVER
27 YEARS? CAN YOU TELL ME THAT? I THINK THOSE ARE THE
COUNTERPOINTS WE NEED. SO ANYWAY, THAT’S IT, JUST CLEAR
IT UP ON THE SFF. THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE]>>THANK YOU. SHAWNA TOMPA, DID I SAY YOUR
NAME CORRECTLY, SHAWNA, ALSO WANTED TO SPEAK ABOUT THE IMPACT
OF NONPROFITS.>>THANK YOU VERY MUCH. I APOLOGIZE FOR ANY REDUNDANCY,
BUT I JUST WANT TO THANK YOU AGAIN FOR HAVING THE OPPORTUNITY
FOR ALL OF US TO COME TOGETHER FOR A MUCH-NEEDED AND
REFRESHING DEMONSTRATION OF OUR DEMOCRACY, COMING TOGETHER,
BEING INFORMED SO WE CAN MAKE WELL-EDUCATED DECISIONS. SO WITH THAT BEING SAID, I
REPRESENT GENESIS CITY. IT’S A YOUTH SERVICES AGENCY IN
DOWNTOWN PHOENIX HOUSED IN DISTRICT 8. WE HAVE BEEN IN EXISTENCE FOR
27 YEARS, AND I PERSONALLY HAVE BEEN THERE FOR 18, AND WE HAVE
REAPED THE BENEFIT OF A VERY STRONG AND ROBUST RELATIONSHIP
WITH BOTH THE CITY OF PHOENIX AND THE PHOENIX SUNS, AND I
THINK THE PARTNERSHIPS THAT WE HAVE IN THIS COMMUNITY, WE ARE A
BIG CITY WITH A SMALL TOWN MENTALITY WHEN IT COMES TO
GIVING AND SUPPORTING EACH OTHER CANNOT BE UNDERSCORED. THE PLAN THAT HAS BEEN IN PLACE,
RIGHT, THE PARTNERSHIP HAS WORKED WELL. I COMMEND YOU, CHRIS, FOR LAYING
OUT A WELL-LAID-OUT DESCRIPTION OF THE HISTORY AND THE PROPOSAL
MOVING FORWARD. IT HAS BEEN BENEFICIAL FOR
EVERYBODY, AND THAT PARTNERSHIP SHOULD CONTINUE, AND IT DOES
BENEFIT, IN THE SENSE OF A NONPROFIT, OUR YOUTH THAT WE
WORK WITH NOT ONLY IN THE PROGRAMS AS A YOUTH SERVICES
AGENCY, BUT AS A CHARTER HIGH SCHOOL. OUR KIDS HAVE BEEN TRANSFORMED
THROUGH THE SMALL — OR THE STRONG COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS
THAT WE HAVE BOTH WITH THE CITY AND THE SUNS. AND I’M NOT TALKING JUST
FINANCIAL. FINANCIAL IS ONE, BUT ALSO THE
JOBS, THE SEASONAL JOBS, THOSE ARE ENTRY-LEVEL JOBS FOR OUR
KIDS TO GET THEIR FEET WET AND TO GAIN SOME EXPERIENCE AND GAIN
SOME CONFIDENCE. THE PARTNERSHIPS NOT ONLY
FINANCIALLY, LIKE I SAID, BUT THE PHOENIX SUNS WERE JUST OUT
AT OUR FUNDRAISER BACK IN NOVEMBER, AND THEY WERE RIGHT BY
OUR SIDE SUPPORTING NOT ONLY US BUT OUR YOUTH THAT WE SERVE. I JUST DON’T WANT TO UNDERSCORE
THE VALUE OF STRONG COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS, AND WE HAVE THAT
HERE, AND I WANT IT TO CONTINUE, AND A LOT OF PEOPLE BENEFIT FROM
IT. SO THANK YOU FOR THE
OPPORTUNITY.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] NEXT IS JEREMY WILHEID, WHO
ASKED THAT HIS QUESTIONS BE READ INTO THE RECORD. KIMPTON HOTEL PALAMAR AND OUR
200 EMPLOYEES FULLY SUPPORT MOVING FORWARD WITH THE
RENOVATION OF THE ARENA. WITHOUT IT, OUR BUSINESS AND
ULTIMATELY OUR STAFF WILL SUFFER GREATLY. LESS REVENUE MEANS LESS TAXES
FROM OUR BUSINESSES. THANK YOU FOR THAT COMMENT. BILL KEVLER ASKED TO SPEAK. BILL?>>THANK YOU FOR THIS. THE CLARIFICATION WAS VERY
HELPFUL BECAUSE I HAD SOME PRECONCEIVED NOTIONS AS WELL. I’M A NEW RESIDENT. I’VE LIVED HERE FOR ABOUT A
YEAR. I LIVE IN THE CITY. AND I’VE GROWN TO REALLY LOVE
AND APPRECIATE THIS CITY. I LOVE IT HERE. INTERESTINGLY ENOUGH, I’M NOT A
BIG SPORTS FAN. HOWEVER, I UNDERSTAND THE
IMPORTANCE OF THE ECONOMIC VIBRANCY THAT A GOOD SPORTS
PROGRAM BRINGS INTO THE CITY, SO FROM MY PERSPECTIVE, I THINK
MOVING FORWARD WITH THIS RENOVATION MAKES A LOT OF SENSE,
ESPECIALLY WITH THE CLARIFICATION THAT WAS PROVIDED
TODAY, AND I WANT TO POINT OUT TOO, I WANT TO THANK THE PEOPLE
THAT HAVE BEEN IN THE OPPOSITION BECAUSE THE ISSUES THEY BRING UP
ARE VERY IMPORTANT, AND THEY’RE IMPORTANT TO ME. WHEN WE TALK ABOUT A LIVING
WAGE, WHEN WE TALK ABOUT EDUCATION, WHEN WE TALK ABOUT
HEALTHCARE ISSUES, HOMELESSNESS, THOSE TYPES OF THINGS HERE,
THOSE ARE SIGNIFICANT AND CRITICAL ISSUES, BUT ECONOMIC
VIBRANCY ALSO ALLOWS US TO WORK BETTER AT WORKING THROUGH THOSE
TYPES OF THINGS. SO THANKS AGAIN. I APPRECIATE ALL THE SUPPORT,
AND I LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING THIS MOVE FORWARD.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] THE NEXT COMMENT IS FROM CINDY
AND IT’S EITHER GOWAN OR GOGAN, SO FORGIVE ME FOR BUTCHERING
YOUR NAME. SHE ASKED THAT HER COMMENT BE
READ INTO THE RECORD. I SUPPORT STAFF’S
RECOMMENDATION FOR THE RENOVATION OF THE
CITY-OWNED ARENA. THIS ARENA’S CURRENT USE IS AN
IMPORTANT ECONOMIC DRIVER. THANK YOU FOR THAT. SARAH DEMIL ALSO ASKED THAT HER
COMMENT BE READ INTO THE RECORD. WHY DOESN’T THE CITY ALLOW THE
SUNS TO CALL THE BUILDING OBSOLETE, ALLOW A MEDIATOR, AND
MAKE A BETTER DEAL?>>I GUESS I’LL TAKE THAT AND
THEN TURN IT OVER TO JEREMY IF HE NEEDS TO. OUR CHALLENGE IS AS YOU THINK
ABOUT MOVING FORWARD AND WE OWN THIS PIECE OF REAL ESTATE AND WE
KNOW THESE THINGS THAT ARE MOVING FORWARD IS WHEN IT GOES
TO THE ARBITRATOR, SHOULD IT GO TO THE ARBITRATOR, THE
ARBITRATOR COULD FIND EVERYTHING THAT THEY WOULD CONSIDER WRONG
WITH IT, AT THAT POINT IT’S 100 PERCENT ON THE CITY TO MAKE
THOSE RENOVATIONS, SHOULD THE CITY COUNCIL MAKE THAT DECISION. SO NOW WE HAVE AN ENTITY, OUR
ANCHOR TENANT WHO IS WILLING TO INVEST MONEY IN OUR BUILDING,
AND AS WE LOOK AT THE OPTIONS AND OPPORTUNITIES MOVING
FORWARD, YOU COULD LOOK AT THE ARBITRATOR COULD COME BACK AND
SAY IT’S X OR IT’S Y, WE HAVE A KNOWN AMOUNT TODAY, WE HAVE A
KNOWN TRANSACTION MOVING FORWARD, AND FOR US LOOKING AT
WHAT THOSE OPTIONS ARE IN MOVING FORWARD, KNOWING WHAT WE KNOW
ABOUT OUR BUILDING, WE THOUGHT THAT THIS WAS THE BEST WAY TO
RECOMMEND TO CITY COUNCIL TO MOVE FORWARD.>>THANK YOU. LORI KINGERY ASKED THAT HER
QUESTIONS BE READ ALOUD. THE FIRST ONE IS, WHAT ARE THE
CRITERIAS USED FOR USING, ACTIVATING THE OBSOLESCENCE
CLAUSE?>>I’LL TURN IT OVER TO JEREMY
LEGG TO ANSWER THAT FOR YOU.>>SO UNDER THE TERMS OF THE
CURRENT CONTRACT BETWEEN THE CITY AND THE SUNS, THE AGREEMENT
DOES GO THROUGH 2032, BUT STARTING ON JULY 1, 2019, THE
SUNS COULD PROVIDE NOTICE TO THE CITY THAT THEY BELIEVE THE
BUILDING — AND WHEN WE TALK ABOUT OBSOLETE, IT’S DOES THE
BUILDING DO WHAT IT WAS INTENDED TO DO WHEN WE ENTERED INTO THIS
AGREEMENT 30 YEARS AGO, DOES IT STILL DO AND PERFORM AND
FUNCTION THE SAME WAY, AND CAN IT? AND THEY COULD PROVIDE US WITH
NOTICE OF THAT IN JULY. THERE WOULD BE AN ARBITRATION
PANEL, SO THERE WOULD BE THREE STRANGERS WHO WOULD BE MAKING A
HUGELY IMPORTANT DECISION, AND UNDER THE TERMS OF THE
AGREEMENT, THROUGH THAT BINDING ARBITRATION, THE CITY WOULD HAVE
TO FUND 100 PERCENT OF IT, AS OPPOSED TO BRINGING IN THE
$80 MILLION FROM THE SUNS PLUS COVERING ANY COST OVERRUNS. OTHER TERMS WOULDN’T CHANGE. THERE WOULD BE NO ABILITY TO
INCREASE THE RENT THAT THEY’RE PAYING, AND THAT WOULD ALSO ONLY
GET US THROUGH 2032, AS OPPOSED TO EITHER 2037 OR EVEN 2042 WITH
THE OPTION. SO GOING THROUGH THAT OBSOLETE,
OBSOLESCENCE PROCESS EXPOSES THE CITY TO A GREAT DEAL OF RISK AND
COULD ACTUALLY END UP COSTING MORE AND GENERATING LESS REVENUE
FOR THE CITY.>>THANK YOU. THERE’S A FOLLOW-UP QUESTION. HOW DID THE 230 MILLION FIGURE
GET DECIDED?>>SO IT WAS MENTIONED EARLIER. SO WE COMMISSIONED A FEASIBILITY
STUDY. IT’S BEEN ABOUT PROBABLY ABOUT A
YEAR AGO NOW, TO HAVE THE BUILDING LOOKED AT AND ANALYZED
FROM THE STANDPOINT OF WHAT REALLY WAS POSSIBLE AND FEASIBLE
TO DO IN TERMS OF RENOVATIONS THAT COULD MAKE IT TO WHERE IT
IS BROUGHT UP TO CURRENT STANDARDS NOW, AND THEN
OBVIOUSLY AS SOMETHING THAT WE COULD CONTINUE TO UTILIZE FOR
YEARS GOING FORWARD. SO THIS IS NOT SOMETHING WE
PULLED OUT OF THIN AIR, OBVIOUSLY. WE’VE HAD ARCHITECTS, WE HAVE
HAD MEP ENGINEERS, WE’VE HAD STRUCTURAL ENGINEERS, COST
ESTIMATORS ALL COME IN AND DO AN ANALYSIS, AND TO BE REALLY
CANDID, WHEN WE FIRST WENT DOWN THIS ROAD, WE REALLY WEREN’T
SURE WHAT THE FINAL ANSWER WAS GOING TO BE. WE DIDN’T KNOW IF IT WAS GOING
TO END UP BEING A $450 MILLION PRICE TAG OR A RECOMMENDATION
THAT THE BUILDING, FRANKLY, WASN’T EVEN SALVAGEABLE WHEN YOU
START LOOKING AT THE ACTUAL FOOTPRINT AND WHAT IS KIND OF
STATE-OF-THE-ART AND CONSIDERED TO BE A MODERN NBA OR NHL
FACILITY, ALL THOSE THINGS WERE THINGS THAT WE LOOKED AT. AT THE END OF THE DAY, FRANKLY,
WE WERE PLEASANTLY SURPRISED TO FIND THAT — AND OBVIOUSLY
$230 MILLION IS A TON OF MONEY FOR ANYBODY. THAT’S NOT LOST ON ANY OF US. BUT IN THE SCOPE OF BUILDINGS,
PARTICULARLY OF THIS MAGNITUDE, TO COME TO THE CONCLUSION THAT
WE WERE ABLE TO MAKE RENOVATIONS THAT WOULD MAKE THE BUILDING
WORK AND WORK FOR AN EXTENDED PERIOD OF TIME AND KEEP US IN
OUR HOME, WHICH IS DOWNTOWN PHOENIX, WE WERE VERY PLEASED TO
COME UP WITH THAT NUMBER, TO SEE THAT THE ESTIMATES CAME DOWN TO
THAT $230 MILLION NUMBER, AND THE REALITY IS UNDER THE
AGREEMENT, LOOK, IF IT ENDS UP BEING THAT THESE DOLLARS AREN’T
ENOUGH, WE’RE COMMITTING OURSELVES TO COVER ALL THOSE
COSTS. SO IF IT ENDS UP BEING
$250 MILLION, THAT EXTRA $20 MILLION IS COMPLETELY ON US. SO WE LOOKED AT IT FROM THE
STANDPOINT OF WHAT WAS FAIR TO THE CITY OF PHOENIX IN TERMS OF
WHAT THEIR CONTRIBUTIONS COULD BE, AND AS WE’VE SAID NUMEROUS
TIMES HERE FOCUSING ON THE INFRASTRUCTURE AND THE PIECES
THAT ARE MORE GEARED TOWARDS FAN AMENITIES, THE CLUB SPACES, THE
BETTER HOSPITALITY AREAS, SUITES, ALL OF THOSE KIND OF
REVENUE-GENERATING AREAS THAT ARE MORE FAN-FACING, OBVIOUSLY
WE TOOK THOSE AS OUR OWN OBLIGATION. SO WHEN WE ARRIVED AT THAT
NUMBER, AGAIN, IT WASN’T SOMETHING THAT WE JUST KIND OF
CAME UP WITH OUT OF THIN AIR. WE HAD A WHOLE TEAM OF ANALYSTS
AND PROFESSIONALS IN HERE HELPING US WITH THAT ANALYSIS.>>THANK YOU. THE NEXT CARD, I APOLOGIZE AGAIN
FOR MY PRONUNCIATION. IONEL OR IONEL REPTA. YOU KNOW, YOUR QUESTIONS HAVE
BEEN PRETTY WELL COVERED. DO YOU STILL WISH TO SPEAK?>>YES.>>THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. SO MY NAME IS IONEL REPTA. I’M JUST A REGULAR CITIZEN OF
PHOENIX, AND I WOULD LIKE TO ASK THE CITY COUNCIL TO BE MORE
FORTHCOMING IN ADDRESSING HOW THE RENOVATIONS ARE BEING PAID
BECAUSE SEVERAL TIMES IT’S BEEN REFERRED TO AS BEING PAID FROM
THE SPORTS FUND, YET AT THE SAME TIME IN YOUR OWN PAMPHLET WE SEE
THAT IT ALSO SAYS THE CITY WILL FINANCE ITS COST THROUGH BONDS
TO BE REPAID OVER 18 YEARS. THIS IS A DEBT TO THE TAXPAYERS
TO BE PAID BACK WITH INTEREST, AS SOMEONE ELSE ALREADY
STATED, AT LEAST BETWEEN ABOUT 5.5 TO 6 PERCENT. I DO NOT CONSENT TO ANY FUTURE
DEBTS BECAUSE ESSENTIALLY WHAT WE’RE DOING IS WE’RE HOLDING
OURSELVES HOSTAGE WHEN WE COULD BE USING FUTURE MONEY, FUTURE
INCOME, FUTURE REVENUE TO BE HELPING OUT FOR FUTURE CITY
EXPENSES THAT A LOT OF TAXPAYERS HAVE CONCERNS WITH, AND SO IT IS
A PRIVILEGE FOR ANY BUSINESS, ANY PRIVATE ENTERPRISE TO USE
THIS BUILDING, INCLUDING THE SUNS, WHICH WE ARE ALL THANKFUL
FOR. AND SO IF THE SUNS WANT
ADDITIONAL RENOVATIONS, THEY SHOULD, BECAUSE THEY HAVE A LOT
OF MONEY, THEY SHOULD PAY FOR THEM, AS YOU JUST MENTIONED,
THAT YOU CAN, AND AS A CITIZEN, I SAY YOU SHOULD, BECAUSE WE
HAVE OTHER CONCERNS THAT ARE NOT BEING COVERED THAT ARE MORE
ESSENTIAL. AND MY LAST POINT, IT’S NOT ON
HERE. SO I JUST ESSENTIALLY WANTED TO
SAY — OH, MY LAST POINT. THERE ARE WAYS THAT WE CAN
INVEST OUR MONEY TO GET MORE JOBS AND MORE EFFICIENCY FOR THE
FUTURE. LET’S BE OPEN TO MORE DISCUSSION
TIME WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE WILLING TO OFFER SOLUTIONS INSTEAD OF
SETTLING FOR MEDIOCRITY, EVEN THOUGH GOODS THINGS ARE BEING
DONE, BUT AT THE SAME TIME WE CAN BE DOING SO MUCH MORE IN HOW
WE CHOOSE TO SPEND OUR MONEY WITH THE POTENTIAL SOLUTIONS
THAT ARE OUT THERE. LET’S SETTLE FOR THE BEST, NOT
JUST WHAT WAS ACCEPTABLE IN THE PAST. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] NEXT IS BRAMLEY PAULEN.>>MY QUESTION IS FOR THE SUNS. CAN YOU IDENTIFY AN ALTERNATIVE
VIABLE OPTION FOR THE SUNS THAT IS LESS EXPENSIVE AND THE
SUNS PAYING EVERY BIT OF THE $230 MILLION THEMSELVES?>>SAY THAT AGAIN.>>IF THIS PROPOSAL DOES NOT GO
THROUGH AND YOU’RE LEFT WITH MAKING A DECISION, CAN YOU
EXPLAIN TO US A SINGLE OPTION THAT YOU HAVE THAT IS LESS
EXPENSIVE THAN YOU PAYING ALL OF THIS $230 MILLION? MOVING SOMEPLACE ELSE, FOR
EXAMPLE.>>WELL, THERE’S A WIDE RANGE OF
OPTIONS YOU COULD LOOK AT. THE WAY WE’VE APPROACHED THIS IS
THAT WE’VE HAD A CONTRACT WITH THE CITY OF PHOENIX FOR THE LAST
GOING ON 30 YEARS, AND THIS PROCESS THAT WE’RE GOING THROUGH
IS A NATURAL CONTINUATION OF THAT PROCESS. THIS WAS THE BARGAIN THAT WAS
MADE, AGAIN, 30 YEARS AGO, AND WHAT WE’RE GOING THROUGH NOW,
FROM OUR PERSPECTIVE, IS THE MOST COST-EFFECTIVE AND THE MOST
PRUDENT FOR ALL PARTIES INVOLVED, TAKING INTO ACCOUNT
WHAT THE NEEDS ARE FOR THE SUNS, WHAT THE NEEDS ARE FOR THE
COMMUNITY, AND ALSO WHAT IT MEANS FOR THIS CITY TO HAVE AN
ASSET LIKE THIS TO BE ABLE TO UTILIZE BECAUSE I THINK WHAT’S
IMPORTANT, AND I HAVEN’T HEARD REALLY COVERED A WHOLE BUNCH
TODAY, THERE’S A LOT OF TALK ABOUT OBVIOUSLY THE TICKETED
EVENTS AND THE SUNS, A FEW THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND, FIRST,
THE SUNS ARE 30 PERCENT OF THE PROGRAMMING IN THIS BUILDING. THERE’S ANOTHER 70 PERCENT OF
PROGRAMMING THAT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE SUNS, THAT A WIDE
VARIETY OF DIFFERENT TASTES AND SEGMENTS OF THE MARKET GET THE
OPPORTUNITY TO ENJOY. THE OTHER PIECE IS ABOUT THE
200-PLUS COMMUNITY EVENTS THAT HAPPEN HERE THAT PEOPLE GET TO
UTILIZE THE BUILDING FOR NO CHARGE OTHER THAN WHAT IT COST
TO PUT THE LIGHTS ON AND TO HAVE THINGS STAFFED, AND THAT’S A
WIDE RANGE OF CHARITY EVENTS, A WIDE RANGE OF DIFFERENT
FOUNDATIONS WE ALLOW TO COME IN HERE, JUNIOR BASKETBALL, YOU
ACTUALLY HAVE MORE JUNIOR BASKETBALL GETS PLAYED IN THIS
BUILDING THAN PROFESSIONAL BASKETBALL GETS PLAYED IN THIS
BUILDING. SO ARE THERE OTHER OPTIONS? YEAH, THERE’S OTHER OPTIONS, BUT
WE’VE BEEN IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE CITY OF PHOENIX FOR THREE
DECADES, AND IT’S A PARTNERSHIP THAT WE BELIEVE HAS WORKED VERY
WELL FOR EVERYBODY INVOLVED, AND WE THINK IT’S MOST PRUDENT TO
MOVE FORWARD WITH THIS STRUCTURE.>>I APPRECIATE EVERYTHING THAT
YOU’VE SAID, BUT MY QUESTION IS, IS THERE A VIABLE ALTERNATIVE
THAN LESS COST FOR THE SUNS THAN PAYING $230 MILLION?>>WE HAVEN’T EVEN LOOKED AT
THAT YET. OUR FOCUS HAS BEEN ON GETTING
THIS DEAL DONE.>>MY NEXT QUESTION IS FOR THE
STAFF. CAN YOU IDENTIFY AN ARENA OR
STADIUM DEAL ANYWHERE IN THIS COUNTRY IN WHICH THE TAXPAYERS
OF — ANY TAXPAYER IS PAYING MORE THAN THE — IT’S GOING TO
BE MORE THAN $200 MILLION? $150 MILLION, $200 MILLION A
YEAR, CARRYING COSTS, SO ON, IT’S WELL NORTH OF $200 MILLION. CAN YOU IDENTIFY ANY ARENA OR
STADIUM DEAL WHERE THE CITIZENS ARE PAYING MORE? AND I UNDERSTAND THIS IS
OUT-OF-STATE, OUT-OF-TOWN CITIZENS, BUT ANY CITIZEN.>>SURE, SO THAT’S A GOOD
QUESTION. THERE ARE A LOT OF SPORTS
FACILITIES ACROSS THE UNITED STATES, YOU KNOW,
FOOTBALL, BASKETBALL, BASEBALL, HOCKEY, SOCCER,
WHAT HAVE YOU, AND THERE ARE A LOT OF DIFFERENT MARKETS
ACROSS THIS COUNTRY. THERE ARE A LOT OF DIFFERENT
WAYS THAT ALL THOSE DEALS HAVE BEEN DONE. ARE THERE MORE EXPENSIVE WAYS TO
DO THIS? WELL, CERTAINLY BUILDING A NEW
ARENA WOULD BE MORE EXPENSIVE. SO FOR EXAMPLE, IN MILWAUKEE AND
IN SACRAMENTO, THERE HAVE BEEN NEW NBA ARENAS BUILT OVER THE
LAST FEW YEARS THAT COST NORTH OF $500 MILLION AND WHERE THOSE
COMMUNITIES, THE PUBLIC, DECIDED THAT THEY WANTED TO CO-INVEST
AND PARTNER WITH THE SPORTS TEAMS IN THOSE MARKETS. SO FOR EXAMPLE, MILWAUKEE AND
SACRAMENTO INVESTING UPWARDS OF 200, $250 MILLION TOWARDS
BUILDING NEW FACILITIES IN PARTNERSHIPS WITH THEIR TEAMS.>>BUT I JUST WANT TO
UNDERSTAND, ARE THERE ANY ARENA DEALS OR STADIUM DEALS WHERE THE
TAXPAYERS –>>30 SECONDS.>>– ARE CONTRIBUTING MORE THAN
WHAT WOULD BE $200 MILLION?>>IF I UNDERSTOOD THE QUESTION
CORRECTLY, THOSE ARE TWO EXAMPLES WHERE TAXPAYERS PAID
MORE THAN $200 MILLION. THERE MAY BE OTHERS.>>MY FINAL QUESTION. CAN SOMEBODY IDENTIFY WHAT THE
NEARLY $170 MILLION OF ACCRUAL THAT IS BEING REMOVED FROM THE
BOOKS?>>SO THE $170 MILLION RELATES
TO A PROVISION IN THE ORIGINAL CONTRACT, THE ORIGINAL LEASE
BETWEEN THE SUNS AND THE ARENA AND THE CITY. THE ORIGINAL PROJECTIONS FROM
1989 SHOWED A CERTAIN AMOUNT OF REVENUES COMING FROM SUITES AND
SIGNAGE TO THE BUILDING. THE DEAL WITH THE CITY WAS THAT
THE SUNS WOULD GET 60 PERCENT OF THAT SUITE AND SIGNAGE REVENUE
TO GO TO THE SUNS, TO THE EXTENT THAT THE ARENA HAD CASH FLOW TO
DO THAT. OVER THE YEARS, THE ARENA HAS
NOT CASH FLOWED TO THAT LEVEL, AND EACH YEAR THAT NUMBER GETS
INCREASED BY 4, 5, $6 MILLION. SO OVER A 27-YEAR PERIOD, THAT
DEFICIT OF PAYMENTS TO THE SUNS FROM THE CITY AND ARENA
PARTNERSHIP HAS GROWN TO $170 MILLION.>>THANK YOU. DEVONI PRUCE, PRICE, CEO OF THE
DOWNTOWN PHOENIX INC, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE PHOENIX
COMMUNITY ALLIANCE, ASKED THAT THIS REMARK BE READ INTO THE
RECORD. DOWNTOWN WAS A MUCH DIFFERENT
PLACE 26 YEARS AGO. THE ARENA IS OUR ANCHOR TENANT,
AND HAVING A RENOVATED MULTIPURPOSE VENUE WILL CONTINUE
TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE VIBRANT URBAN CENTER OF OUR CITY THAT
DOWNTOWN HAS BEGUN, WHICH IN TURN BENEFITS THE ENTIRE CITY. THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] ANOTHER FRIEND,
RICHARD DIERIARTI WRITES, I LISTEN TO THE
SPORTS TALK SHOWS. THERE IS A LOT OF INCORRECT
BIASED INFORMATION THAT GOES UNCHALLENGED. COUNCILMAN SAL DICICCIO IS NOT
UNBIASED, BUT HE WENT ON AN HOUR WITHOUT ANYBODY NOTING HIS
HISTORY. THIS GOES ON. MANY GOOD ARRANGEMENTS WERE —
SORRY, ARGUMENTS WERE MADE TODAY, GOOD PUBLIC INFORMATION
CAMPAIGN, NOT JUST LOBBYING COUNCILMEMBERS. KEY ARGUMENTS WERE OFFERED BUT
ARE NOT PUBLICIZED WIDELY. NOT A NEW TAX, A TOURIST TAX. IT IS LIKE A CULTURAL AMENITY
LIKE A MUSEUM, A ZOO OR A LIBRARY, NOT ALL PEOPLE USE MANY
OF THESE, BUT LOTS USE PART OF THEM. QUALITY OF LIFE, IT MAKES UP A
GOOD CITY. OTHER OPTIONS OR REPLACEMENT ARE
NOT GOOD OPTIONS. THANK YOU FOR THAT. STEVEN MALINE, MALINE. STEVEN?>>MALINA.>>THANK YOU. MALINA.>>HI. THANK YOU AND SORRY IF ANY OF
THIS HAS BEEN COVERED BEFORE, BUT I JUST WANT TO THANK THE
CITY FOR COMING UP WITH THIS AGREEMENT WITH THE SUNS. I DON’T CARE IF SOMEONE HAS $100
TO THEIR NAME OR $100 BILLION, THE CITY NEEDS TO FUND AND
MAINTAIN THE ASSETS THEY OWN, JUST LIKE ANYONE WOULD, AND SO I
APPRECIATE THIS DEAL WITH THE SUNS TRYING TO PAY FOR A GOOD
PORTION OF THAT. AND ALSO I JUST WANT TO SAY THAT
ON SOCIAL MEDIA AND IN THE NEWS THERE’S A LOT OF STUFF LIKE OH,
I DON’T WANT TO GIVE SARVER THIS OR SARVER THAT, BUT THAT’S JUST
NOT RIGHT JUST BECAUSE HE HAS SO MUCH MONEY THAT THE CITY DOESN’T
DO WHAT THEY’RE SUPPOSED TO DO, SO — AND ALL THIS STUFF ABOUT
THE TEAM NOT BEING COMPETITIVE RIGHT NOW, IF YOU’RE GOING TO
FACTOR THAT INTO YOUR DECISION ON THIS DEAL, YOU ALSO HAVE TO
FACTOR IN HOW IT WAS IN ’93 WHEN THE CITY HAD SO MUCH PRIDE IN
THIS TEAM AND ALSO THE NASH ERA. SO I JUST WANT TO SAY THANK YOU
AND I REALLY HOPE THIS DEAL GOES THROUGH. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] NATHAN GRIM. NATHAN, ARE YOU STILL HERE? THANK YOU.>>I’M NOT GOING TO LIE, THOSE
LAST TWO KIND OF TOOK A LITTLE THUNDER FROM ME.>>OKAY.>>BUT ME BEING A BORN AND
RAISED PHOENICIAN HERE, GROWING UP AS A KID, MY FIRST LOVE WAS
THE PHOENIX SUNS. SEVEN YEARS OLD, KEVIN JOHNSON
WAS A ROOKIE, PLAYED YEAR-ROUND SPORTS FOR ABOUT 20-PLUS YEARS
AFTER THAT. WATCHING DOWNTOWN PHOENIX, WE’RE
ONE OF THE FIFTH, SIXTH LARGEST CITIES IN THE NATION, AND YET
WE’RE STILL CONSIDERED A SMALL-MARKET TEAM. THERE’S JUST SO MUCH THAT GOES
ON WITH THIS DOWNTOWN. IN THE LAST 20 YEARS, I ACTUALLY
GIVE THE CITY OF PHOENIX A LOT OF PROPS BECAUSE 20 YEARS AGO,
THIS WAS A GRAVEYARD. IF THERE WASN’T A SUNS GAME
GOING ON OR A D-BACKS, IT WAS JUST A GHOST TOWN. PUTTING $2 BILLION IN THE LAST
20 YEARS, GIVING US A LOT OF NOTORIETY, IT’S BRINGING A LOT
OF THOSE EVENTS, THE ALL-STAR WEEKENDS, THE SUPER BOWLS,
EVERYTHING THAT YOU MENTIONED EARLIER, AND IT’S A BIG POINT OF
PRIDE TO ME WHEN I HAVE TO DEFEND MY CITY TO PEOPLE THAT
COME FROM OUT-OF-TOWN THAT ARE CONSTANTLY LIKE OH, CHICAGO IS
THIS AND ALL THAT. I’M LIKE, PHOENIX IS THIS,
PHOENIX IS THAT. SO FOR ME PERSONALLY, I’M A
DIE-HARD PHOENICIAN, I TAKE A LOT OF PRIDE IN MY CITY, AND I
JUST WANT TO THANK YOU GUYS FOR DOING WHAT YOU’RE DOING. SO THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] WE’RE DOWN TO THE LAST CARD. I’M GOING ON ASK THAT AFTER THIS
SPEAKER CONCLUDES, IF YOU WOULD ALL HANG ONTO YOUR SEATS FOR A
FEW MINUTES BECAUSE WE DO HAVE A LITTLE BIT MORE BUSINESS TO DO. DARCY MARVICK.>>GOOD MORNING. THANK YOU. I AM AGAINST THIS CORPORATE
WELFARE. HAS THAT BEEN SAID? I KNOW MEN LIKE SARVER, A LOT OF
PEOPLE IN THE TOP 1 PERCENT, AND THEY’VE SAID IT ALREADY, THAT IF
THEY DON’T GET CORPORATE WELFARE, IF THEY DON’T GET THEIR
TAX BREAKS FROM TRUMP, THEN THEY WILL NOT GIVE TO CHARITY. YOU TALK ABOUT ALL THE CHARITY
YOU’RE DOING. THAT’S FINE AND GREAT. IS THAT ONLY BECAUSE YOU’VE BEEN
GIVEN A CUT OF THE CHECK EVERY TIME FOR ANOTHER RENOVATION AND
YOU’LL GET ANOTHER, AND IF YOU DO NOT GET THIS DEAL, WILL YOU
STOP GIVING TO CHARITY? I BET HE WILL. THIS IS THE KIND OF PERSON
SARVER IS. HE’S A BILLIONAIRE WHO ONLY
CARES ABOUT CORPORATE WELFARE. SO MY NEXT STEP IS I HAVE A
QUESTION. EVERYONE TALKS ABOUT PHOENIX
BEING A VIBRANT CITY. OH, WE’RE THE SIXTH LARGEST. YOU LOVE TO BRAG ABOUT BEING THE
SIXTH LARGEST. MAJOR CITIES, AND THEY’VE ALL
LISTED IT, YOU COULD LOOK IT UP, HAVE PRIVATE OWNERSHIPS OF
ARENAS. SO I HAVE A QUESTION FOR YOU IN
PHOENIX. ARE YOU WILLING TO SELL THIS
ARENA TO THE BILLIONAIRE SARVER? AND THEN SELL IT TO SARVER, AND
HE COULD PAY FOR ALL THE RENOVATIONS HIMSELF, AND THEN
THE PROFIT FROM SELLING THE ARENA COULD GO TO ACTUALLY
THINGS THAT PHOENIX NEEDS, PUBLIC LIBRARIES, THE PHOENIX
BOTANICAL GARDEN ONLY GOES ON DONATIONS. THEY DON’T GET YOUR CORPORATE
WELFARE. I THINK YOU’RE PICKING AND
CHOOSING, YOU’RE CHERRYPICKING, AND I AM SICK OF SUCKING UP TO
THE WEALTHY SPORTS OWNERS. THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE]>>THANK YOU. BEFORE WE END OUR QUESTION
SESSION, I WANT TO ASK IF THE MAYOR WILLIAMS OR COUNCILMEMBER
NOWAKOWSKI WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK FOR A MOMENT.>>I CARRY A BIG STICK AND SPEAK
SOFTLY. WHAT CAN I SAY? THANK YOU ALL FOR BEING HERE. THIS IS THE FIRST OF THE
MEETINGS. I INVITE YOU TO ATTEND OTHERS IN
OTHER AREAS. IT’S VERY IMPORTANT THAT WE GET
THE REAL STORY OUT, YOU HEAR, AND WE HEAR YOUR RESPONSE. IT IS YOUR CITY. YOU ARE AN IMPORTANT COMPONENT
OF THIS WHOLE PROCESS, SO AGAIN, THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE. COUNCILMAN, DO YOU WANT TO SAY A
FEW WORDS?>>WELL, MY NAME IS
MICHAEL NOWAKOWSKI. I’M THE COUNCILMAN FOR THIS
DISTRICT WHERE THE ARENA IS AT, AND IT’S REALLY IMPORTANT TO
HAVE COMMUNITY INPUT, AND THE REASON THAT WE’RE HAVING NOT TWO
MEETINGS, NOT THREE MEETINGS, BUT FIVE MEETINGS THROUGHOUT THE
CITY OF PHOENIX IS WE’RE MAKING SURE THAT IT’S SOUTH, NORTH,
EAST AND WEST AND RIGHT HERE IN DOWNTOWN PHOENIX IS THAT WE GET
THAT INPUT, WE FIND THAT COMMON GROUND, AND I THINK WE ALL WANT
TO HAVE THE PHOENIX SUNS STAY HERE IN THE CITY OF PHOENIX, BUT
IT’S HOW WE AGREE TO THIS DEAL, AND THAT’S WHAT WE’RE HERE TO
TALK ABOUT IS TO LISTEN TO YOU ALL, TO FEEL WHAT YOUR CONCERNS
ARE, AND WE AS ELECTED OFFICIALS NEED TO DECIDE WHAT WE DO WITH
YOUR TAX DOLLARS, OR IF WE WANT TO CALL IT THE TOURIST DOLLARS,
THEN WE NEED TO DECIDE WHAT WE DO WITH THAT. THERE’S OTHER FUNDS THAT ARE OUT
THERE THAT WE’RE ADDRESSING ISSUES LIKE PUBLIC SAFETY AND
THE STREETS AND ALL THAT, SO WE’RE TRYING TO BALANCE A LOT OF
THINGS BUT AT THE SAME TIME THE ECONOMIC IMPACT THAT THIS ARENA
HAS AND THE JOBS IT PRODUCES, AND JUST LOOK AT THE VIBRANCE OF
DOWNTOWN PHOENIX OVER THE LAST TEN YEARS AS SERVING AS YOUR
CITY COUNCILMEMBER THAT IT BRINGS TO THE DOWNTOWN AREA. SO HOPEFULLY IF YOU LIVE IN
SOUTH PHOENIX, WE’RE GOING TO BE HAVING A MEETING, I THINK IT’S
ON WEDNESDAY, IS IT? WEDNESDAY NIGHT, RIGHT THERE AT
THE SOUTH MOUNTAIN COMMUNITY CENTER. IT’S ON 3rd STREET AND ALTA
VISTA. IT’S JUST BASICALLY A BLOCK AWAY
FROM SOUTH OF SOUTHERN, AND WE INVITE EVERYONE TO BE OUT THERE. IT’S REALLY IMPORTANT THAT WE
GET YOUR INPUT, AND THAT’S ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I LIKE ABOUT
OUR MAYOR AND OUR COUNCIL IS THAT WE’RE NOT AFRAID TO GO OUT
TO THE COMMUNITY AND LISTEN TO YOUR CONCERNS. AND ONCE WE GATHER ALL THOSE
CONCERNS, THEN WE MAKE UP OUR MINDS. SO THANK YOU, AND GOD BLESS YOU
ALL FOR COMING OUT. AND I REALLY WANT TO THANK OUR
STAFF FOR DOING SUCH A GREAT JOB IN TELLING THE STORY AND ALSO
FOR THE PHOENIX SUNS, THEY DIDN’T HAVE TO BE OUT HERE, BUT
THEY WANTED TO BE A PARTNER, SO I CALL THIS THE TEAM PHOENIX
APPROACH WHERE THE CITY AND THE PRIVATE PARTNERS COME TOGETHER
AND WE WORK TOGETHER AS A TEAM, AND WE DO THAT TEAM PHOENIX
APPROACH, WHICH IS BEST FOR THE CITY OF PHOENIX. SO THANK YOU ALL.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] ALL RIGHT.>>THANK YOU. I TOO WANT TO THANK STAFF. I KNOW YOU’VE PUT A LOT OF HOURS
INTO MAKING THIS PRESENTATION AND MAKING EVERYONE AVAILABLE TO
GO OUT, AND FOR THE SUNS, THANK YOU. I KNOW THAT YOU HAVE ALSO PUT A
LOT OF TIME AND EFFORT IN MAKING THIS OCCUR, NOT JUST HERE, BUT
THROUGHOUT THE CITY, AND WE TRULY APPRECIATE IT BECAUSE I
THINK IT’S SO IMPORTANT WE GET ALL THE FACTS OUT, NOT JUST A
FEW ON A RADIO SHOW OR WHEREVER, THAT PEOPLE GET TO UNDERSTAND
WHAT THIS REALLY AGREEMENT POTENTIALLY CAN BE. AND I HAVE BEEN IN PHOENIX A
LONG TIME. I WILL TELL YOU THE CURRENT
CONTRACT KEEPS THEM HERE FOR A FEW MORE YEARS IN AN OLD
DELAPIDATED BUILDING. AS YOU COULD TELL, I’M VERY
SUPPORTIVE OF THIS AGREEMENT. I WAS HERE WHEN WE USED TO BRING
PEOPLE DOWN TO SEE BODIES JUST LAYING ON THE SIDEWALK. THERE WERE NO ACTIVITIES
WHATSOEVER DOWNTOWN. AND THE CITY CORE DOWNTOWN HAS
BEEN BUILT AROUND THE SUNS ARENA, AND WE ARE GRATEFUL FOR
YOUR PARTNERSHIP, AND WE CONTINUE TO LOOK FORWARD TO THE
NEXT MEETINGS AND HEAR YOUR INPUT. THANK YOU. AND THANK YOU FOR MODERATING,
VERY MUCH.>>MY PLEASURE.>>YOU’RE A GREAT MODERATOR.>>THANK YOU.>>PLEASE GIVE HER A HAND. [APPLAUSE]>>IT’S A PRIVILEGE. THANK YOU. THANK YOU, MAYOR. I APPRECIATE IT SO MUCH. SO AS THIS MEETING NOW BEGINS TO
WIND DOWN, WE INVITE ALL OF YOU TO SPEND A LITTLE BIT OF TIME AS
YOU’RE LEAVING AT THE INFORMATION TABLES THAT ARE SET
UP IN THE HALLWAY. REMEMBER, WE HAVE CITY STAFF AND
SUNS STAFF THAT ARE AVAILABLE TO ANSWER ANY OTHER QUESTIONS THAT
YOU MAY HAVE OR JUST TO CHAT WITH. THE INFORMATION TABLES INCLUDE
AN OVERVIEW OF THE ARENA, INCLUDING THE IMPACT OF THE
EVENTS FROM CONCERTS AND FAMILY SHOWS TO CONVENTIONS AND
PROFESSIONAL SPORTS. WE HAVE A TABLE WITH INFORMATION
ON THE RENOVATIONS THAT ARE NEEDED. FINANCIAL EXPERTS ARE HERE TO
ANSWER QUESTIONS ABOUT THE FUNDING. WE HAVE INFORMATION ON THE
OVERALL ECONOMIC IMPACT OF THE ARENA, AND THE SUNS ALSO HAVE
TWO TABLES HERE WITH STAFF READY TO TALK ABOUT THE ORGANIZATION
ITSELF AND THE SUNS CHARITIES THAT AS MANY HAVE NOTED THIS
MORNING GIVE BACK TO COMMUNITIES THROUGHOUT ARIZONA. PLEASE FEEL FREE TO GRAB SOME
MORE REFRESHMENTS. THEY ARE OUT THERE. I THANK YOU ALL FOR BEING HERE. THE NEXT MEETING IS MONDAY,
MONDAY NIGHT STARTING AT 6:00 AT THE PARADISE VALLEY COMMUNITY
CENTER IN NORTHEAST PHOENIX. IF YOU HAVE OTHER QUESTIONS,
FEEL FREE TO VISIT PHOENIX.GOV/ARENA, AND YOU WILL
FIND MANY OF YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED THERE. THANK YOU FOR TAKING THE TIME.

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