People on both sides of a debate over a new basketball and hockey arena in Sodo are building teams of their own. That would be teams of consultants, and they have hired more than a few to handle the political and communications hurdles they anticipate.
We’ve covered former Seattle City Councilmember Peter Steinbrueck’s $40,000 contract with the Port of Seattle. He’ll work on the land-use angle. The Port is also negotiating a contract for a consultant to handle communications about the arena, but they wouldn’t confirm the consultant’s name Wednesday night.
The Manufacturing Industrial Council, which opposes the arena, is working with Pacific Public Affairs.
On the pro-arena side, private investor Chris Hansen has hired Rollin Fatland, a longtime local political consultant and former deputy King County executive. Working for Fatland is top Democratic consultant Christian Sinderman, for political advice, and lobbyist Lynn Claudon, a land-use specialist and the wife of former Seattle Mayor Charley Royer. (Royer’s son, incidentally, is arena opponent and shipping industry lobbyist Jordan Royer).
Mayor Mike McGinn has hired Tim Ceis, the former deputy mayor who started a private consulting business after McGinn ousted his boss, Greg Nickels, from the mayor’s office in 2009. McGinn also hired New Jersey-based arena consultant Carl Hirsh.