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Jackson County Legislator Manny Abarca answered lingering questions on sales tax vote at public meeting

Q&A with Manny Abarca
Posted at 11:17 PM, Mar 26, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — There's still a number of lingering questions surrounding the Royals proposed stadium in the Crossroads and the upcoming stadiums sales tax vote.

It's a very close race and answering the questions from undecided voters will have a huge impact on the election's outcome.

Jackson County Legislator Manny Abarca held a town hall Tuesday afternoon for people who remain undecided.

"If there is still six years left on this lease, why is it that we're not trying to extend?" said Eric Morrison, who came to the meeting with questions.

Abarca said Morrison's question is one people have asked a lot.

"The '06 lease was negotiated well in advance of expiration of the sales tax, as well as the one previous to that, "Abarca said. "I think seven to nine years, depending upon which lease. So we're kind of within that sweet spot of the time to renegotiate anyway."

Abarca said waiting is a mistake.

“I think the biggest detrimental discussion point is like, 'We can wait.There will be another opportunity.' And I don’t think; opportunity rarely knocks twice," Abarca said. "This is something that we need to take seriously about the teams stating that they are looking for other options outside of Jackson County.”

The negotiations aren't really rushed, but what feels to some as last-minute information is what's in the community benefits agreement.

"There's some new additions in that CBA that are net positive," Abarca said about the agreement with the county.

The Royals and Chiefs both say they'll give more than $260 million to support different Jackson County initiatives and community groups.