San Diego officially isn’t holding a referendum next January on Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s Chargers stadium plan that absolutely everybody hates including the Chargers owners: The deadline for scheduling a referendum was last Friday, and it wasn’t scheduled, because see above re: hate.
So now what?
“While it’s no surprise that the Chargers have allowed today’s deadline to pass for a January 12 special election,” said Faulconer, “San Diego can still hold a public vote on a new stadium during the normal election cycle in June or November – if Chargers ownership is willing to work in good faith with their hometown.”
Take out the passive-aggressive snipe at the Chargers ownership (Chargers execs responded with their own passive-aggressive snipe in return — this is what passes for negotiations in San Diego these days), and San Diego is basically in the same position as St. Louis and Oakland with the Rams and Raiders: If the NFL decides this winter to let teams move to L.A. if they don’t have stadium deals in place in their current homes, they’re probably screwed; if it decides to give everybody some more rope and kick everything back a year, there’s still plenty of time to work out a deal that their team can live with.
Though given that “deal that their team can live with” probably means “deal that costs local taxpayers ungodly amounts of money,” the city or cities that lose their teams to L.A. might end up the biggest winners, financially, at least. These things never end well.