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May 14, 2013 at 3:33 PM

Sac Bee report — Sacramento lawsuit alleges city is undervaluing its contribution to arena

In what is becoming a rather busy day-before the critical NBA Board of Governors vote on the Seattle/Sacramento battle over the Kings, the Sacramento Bee is reporting that a lawsuit has been filed alleging that the city of Sacramento is undervaluing its contribution to the arena deal.

Here’s the story with details.

Here are the first few grafs:

Three Sacramento residents filed a lawsuit in Sacramento Superior Court today alleging the city has broken the law on several fronts in its $448 million downtown arena deal.

The suit, filed today by attorneys Patrick Soluri and Jeffrey Anderson, contends the city under-valued the size of the subsidy it is providing developers under a tentative deal to build a sports and entertainment arena in Downtown Plaza.

The city has said it has agreed to place public assets valued at $258 million into the deal, which has yet to be finalized. The plaintiffs – James Cathcart, Julian Camacho and Isaac Gonzalez, all city residents – contend the subsidy is, by their count, $338 million.

The lawsuit alleges city officials have tried to conceal the full amount they are putting into the deal. It also contends the public-private partnership with a group of investors amounts to an illegal give-away of public funds.

In their suit, the plaintiffs allege the city “concealed or suppressed material facts” and that Mayor Kevin Johnson and City Manager John Shirey “failed to disclose in the Term Sheet … that they had privately agreed with the Sacramento Investor Group to subsidize its purchase of the Kings franchise.”

Sports legal expert Michael McCann wrote via Twitter that while the allegations are serious, they are unlikely to be a major impediment:

Comments | More in Kings


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