Politics at play.
Steve Ballmer wants one, the owners of the Oakland A’s want one, they want what the owners of the Sacramento Kings and the Golden State Warriors got from California Governor Jerry Brown. An exemption from the California Environment Quality Act which was signed into law by then Governor Ronald Reagan in 1970 that requires people who want to build projects to submit detailed environmental impact reports. Ballmer wants to build an arena for his Los Angeles Clippers National Basketball Association franchise in Inglewood, California just outside of LA and on some property near the Forum, an arena built more than 50 years ago that once housed the NBA Lakers and the National Hockey League Kings.
Oakland A’s ownership claims it is closing in on selecting a site for a Major League Baseball stadium within the city for its business. A’s ownership plans to request a waiver from Governor Brown to expedite the stadium building process. What the waiver does is simple. Instead of long and drawn out challenges to a project, lawmakers have limited court proceedings against a project to nine months. Ballmer’s lease at the downtown Los Angeles arena ends in six years and he would like to start the arena building process as soon as possible. The California assembly is working on legislation to help Ballmer’s cause. The arena plan has run into another problem, a group of Inglewood residents is suing to block the project claiming that the proposed arena land should have been made available for housing. Inglewood Mayor James Butts disagreed and that caused a problem at a recent city council meeting when a member of a group called Uplift Inglewood tried to serve Butts with the lawsuit during the public comment session of the meeting. Butts adjourned the session. Ballmer claims the LA arena, which is less than 19 years old, is outdated. It’s all about politics.
Ballmer wants a new building now.