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Gov. Parson: ‘Everything we can do’ to keep Chiefs, Royals in Missouri

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Posted at 1:15 PM, Apr 30, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Missouri Gov. Mike Parson said Tuesday morning his administration will “do everything we can” to keep the Kansas City Chiefs and Kansas City Royals in Missouri.

Parson’s comments came a day after efforts accelerated in the Kansas Legislature to approve a set of economic tools that officials hope to use to lure one or both clubs across the state line.

“I don’t know if it’s a question of responding to what Kansas does, but we are going to do everything we can to keep the Royals and the Kansas City Chiefs in the state of Missouri,” Parson said at a groundbreaking event Tuesday morning in Kansas City, Missouri.

Both Kansas and Missouri statehouses are nearing the end of their regular 2024 sessions. Kansas legislators said Monday they were working quickly to pass legislation before the end of the session. It’s not clear if Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly would sign the bill, however, she has previously indicated the state wouldn’t “recruit” the clubs across the state line.

Parson also acknowledged his state’s legislators don’t have much time either.

“There’s lots of things we can do, it’s just late in the session this year to get much done, but the point of it is, we got time to try to work on some ways to try to see what we can do to help with keeping them here and that’s our main goal,” Parson said.

The new competition to see which state - or municipality - can put together a package to land one or both of the clubs might allow the teams a bit of leverage of which option they might want to pursue.

On Saturday, Kansas City Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt told reporters the Chiefs and Royals will explore future stadium options independent of each other after voters turned back a proposed Jackson County sales tax extension that would have helped to fund stadium projects for both teams.

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Kansas City Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt takes questions from reporters on Saturday, April 27, 2024.

Hunt said that he feels a sense of urgency as the club has less than seven years remaining on its lease to play at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. He said the team is exploring all options, including leaving the Truman Sports Complex, something he said the Royals are also exploring.

Hunt said the Chiefs could consider any number of options, including a new stadium - domed or without - as well as revisiting the possibility of renovating Arrowhead.

Late Monday night, Kansas City, Missouri, Mayor Quinton Lucas took to social media noting that Missouri legislators could still “match (or outdo)” efforts on the Kansas side and that he remains “unworried about team moves.”

The mayor’s stance was echoed Tuesday by Parson.

“We are going to do everything we can do to keep them here. They are part of who we are in Missouri,” Parson said. “They are very huge in the impact of the economy in our state. This is something we don’t want to lose out.”

Another variable: by the time the next legislative session begins in Missouri, the state will have a new governor as Parson is set to depart in January 2025.

“You know it’s a business decision. The state has to do their part, the city and county got to do their part,” Parson continued. “We got to see what we got at the end of the day.”