The San Francisco 49ers are getting closer and closer to getting a new football stadium to supplant Candlestick Park. While this is great news to what is seemingly the majority, there are still opponents of the stadium and, namely, the $850 million in loans from the city of Santa Clara, where the new stadium will be built. Those opponents might be able to get in the way of things to an extent, but it's not looking like they'll be able to do a lot about the loan, according to a report from the San Francisco Chronicle.
Santa Clara Plays Fair, a group of folks opposed to the stadium, submitted 5,500 signatures on each of two referendum petitions challenging the financing plans for the stadium. On top of that, they're challenging development issues, but the clear issue is money. The City Council, however, voted 5-2 to discard the petition, on grounds that only new polices for state or local government, "legislative" acts, can be challenged by such referendums. In other words, the stadium development has already been approved, by Measure J back in June 2010, appearing on the official ballot.
It's easy to see the City Council's point in all of this. They are most definitely allowed to choose how to enact the things approved in Measure J, and such things are administrative, again, not able to be challenged by voter initiatives and referendums. One of the biggest issues, according to Santa Clara Plays Fair, is the fact that it's a very large sum of money - they say that they never approved a "blank check."
While true that the number coming from the city is much higher than most figured it would be back when Measure J was around, the ballot was put forth with the understanding of a true cost of a football stadium - somewhere between $800 million and something just over $1 billion. What it comes down to is the fact that these people now opposing the loans are the same people who voted against Measure J, and any attempt to change this now is simply an attempt to overturn something they voted against.