Sacramento Downtown Arena Debate
All of Sacramento anxiously waited this spring to hear whether the NBA would approve a sale of the Sacramento Kings to a coalition of owners who promised to keep the team in town. Key to that successful effort led by Mayor Kevin Johnson was the city’s promise of a new sports complex for the team. As plans proceed, a group calling itself STOP, or Sacramento Taxpayers Opposed to Pork, is mounting a campaign to put the arena plan before voters.
On Thursday, Aug. 22 the Sacramento Press Club hosted a debate about the proposed downtown arena. The discussion was moderated by Sacramento Bee reporter Ryan Lillis.
Joshua Wood represented proponents of the new entertainment and sports complex. Wood is executive director of Region Builders, a commercial building industry trade association that launched DowntownArena.Org in July. The coalition of business, labor and civic groups is backing the project.
Tab Berg, founder and president of TABcommunications Inc., a political and public relations firm, represented an informal coalition now circulating a petition that would put the use of taxpayer funds for the arena before voters.