Don’t believe the Super Bowl 50 hype — Here’s why

By : sfexaminer – excerpt

Call San Francisco’s raw deal for the Super Bowl what you will — a sack, a fumble, an incomplete pass — but ultimately, it’s simply a failure.

As my colleague Josh Sabatini here at the San Francisco Examiner first reported, The City is on the hook for $4.8 million in costs for the Super Bowl City festival, from police work to Muni reroutes and beyond. Santa Clara, on the other hand (where the game will actually be played), will see most of its $3.6 million in costs reimbursed by the Super Bowl Committee.

Yikes. That makes us look like rubes of Herculean proportions. It’s as if someone tried to sell Mayor Ed Lee the Golden Gate Bridge, and he nodded excitedly and shouted, “What a deal!”

But it’s not just a failure to recoup costs that constitutes a failure. No, it’s doubly embarrassing because this a failure to learn from history: We also shelled out millions for the America’s Cup, with little to show in the end.

That was less than a stunning success, as you may recall…

And even if we did net some tax revenues during the Super Bowl City, that argument falls flat because we’d recoup even more if we didn’t have to pay $4.8 million in the first place.

So now, here we are in 2016, three years after the America’s Cup, and we’re taking an almost identically raw deal. Even worse — our reimbursements from the Super Bowl 50 committee barely break $100,000.

But should we blame the Super Bowl 50 committee? Nah. It’s their job to argue for the best deal. Same goes for the NFL.

No, our ire should be directed at the Mayor’s Office. But even then, we don’t know who specifically — besides the mayor — should accept responsibility for this fiasco.

Who negotiated the deal?…

Supervisor Jane Kim grilled city staffers at a hearing last week, asking who led negotiations, but couldn’t get a straight answer from anyone.

So not only is The City on the hook for millions, but we don’t even know who sold out The City.

All we know is this — the NFL won, and San Francisco lost… (more)


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