SANTA CLARA (BCN) — The Santa Clara City Council voted Tuesday to issue a letter to the San Francisco 49ers demanding documents for an audit on Levi’s Stadium operations.
in a unanimous vote The council, which also serves as the city’s Stadium Authority Board, decided to send the 30-day notice to the team’s Stadium Management Company for documents required under Measure J, which was passed by voters in 2010 to build the sports arena.
San Francisco-based Harvey Rose Associates LLC was hired for the audit, which has been delayed because the requested records haven’t been submitted, Mayor Lisa Gillmor said during the council’s Tuesday meeting.
The audit has shown that the city’s general fund money has been used on the stadium, which violates Measure J, Gillmor said.
The Stadium Authority has received limited information from the management company in the two-and-half years since the venue opened, Gillmor said.
The management company is hired by the city, which owns the stadium, and the agreement says the documents have to be prepared and delivered to the Stadium Authority, Gillmor said.
Acting City Manager Rajeev Batra told the council that he went to the management company’s offices with the city’s attorney and finance director on Friday when they verified the required documents exist.
The documents can be provided upon request, but some containing private information haven’t been delivered to City Hall, Batra said.
There may be fear that sending all the documents, some of which may contain trade secrets, and treating them as a public record could lead to the release of proprietary information, City Attorney Richard Nosky said.
“You can’t just have the management company declare something’s confidential to avoid the law, to avoid the contract,” she said.
The mayor said she’d like to see the stadium be successful and the documents will help the city correct any deficiencies.
“We need to have a say in the future of this stadium, this property and how it’s operated,” she said.
“Tonight’s decision was expected and continues a disturbing trend of frivolous and groundless actions by the Mayor and her allies on the Council, putting politics ahead of civic responsibility,” the 49ers said in a statement released Tuesday night.
“The fact is that the Authority has received and/or reviewed all relevant documents and have had access to do so throughout the process,” the team said.