New arena document conveys Maloofs' concerns

7:25 PM, Apr 5, 2012   |    comments
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SACRAMENTO, CA - You're probably well aware by now that Sacramento Kings' owners Joe, Gavin and George Maloof are refusing to pay nearly $3 million in pre-development fees toward building a new arena at the railyards in downtown Sacramento.

Now, new documents reveal many other concerns.

An 11-page document, written by an attorney for the Kings' owners, was presented to the city of Sacramento on March 20. Inside is language such as "the city is behind on its own schedule", and, "how can the city ensure completion of the project by the 2015 deadline?"

READ: Outline of Feasibility Concerns (March 20, 2012)

The actual language is very legal in nature, but the overall message is clear: the Maloofs have doubts.

Those doubts range from to insufficient parking, to funding sources, like the ability to sell the current Natomas site. The documents even mention the initiative to put city spending on the ballot, saying "challenges ... should be expected."

The city responded with a mound of paperwork.

Assistant City Manager John Dangberg issued a 88-page response, essentially saying the issues aren't issues, or will be resolved.

"As you're going through big projects like this there are bound to be challenges," Dangberg said in an interview. "This won't be our first challenge."

As the fight continues over arena funding, others flat-out questioning the Maloofs' intent.

Senate President Pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg wrote, "The Maloofs seem to be looking for every reason not to proceed as opposed to looking for ways to make it work."

The Maloofs' intentions are sure to be questioned at the NBA Board of Governors meetings next week in New York City.

There, the board will decide if the NBA should pay the arena pre-development costs.  

Sources say they're prepared to pay all $3.26 million.

It's a discussion NBA Commissioner David Stern will lead.

When asked about the arena deal, Stern said, "I'm more hopeful than confident at this point." 

By phone, George Maloof refuted those questioning the owners' intentions, saying, "We're all working to be in Sacramento. We want this deal to work."

By Nick Monacelli


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