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Renovations of GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium contingent on April 2 'yes' vote

Team unveiled “Arrowhead Reimagined” concept Wednesday
chiefs announcement.JPG
Posted at 6:31 PM, Feb 28, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Leaders from the Kansas City Chiefs football team made one thing very clear during a media event Wednesday to reveal plans to renovate the team’s stadium: the $800 million project is contingent on voters choosing “yes” on the April 2 ballot.

Jackson County voters will decide whether to repeal an existing 3/8-cent sales tax scheduled to end in 2031 and replace it with a new sales tax at the same rate of 3/8-cent, but for 40 years, until approximately 2064.

Some estimates predict the 40-year sales tax would collect $2 billion the Chiefs and Royals will use for their stadiums.

Earlier in the month, the Royals announced their intention to build a new stadium in the Crossroads neighborhood of downtown Kansas City. Wednesday, the Chiefs revealed plans to renovate GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium with new suites, new amenities, and an “Activation Zone” after demolishing neighboring Kauffman Stadium.

“I’m very optimistic about it,” Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt said of securing a “yes” vote. “We think the Royals have a very exciting project for the city and the county and the state. And we think our plans for Arrowhead are equally exciting.”

The Chiefs and Royals have each donated $500,000 to a committee promoting a “yes” vote.

It released a campaign commercial Tuesday. Former Kansas City Mayor Sly James is a campaign advisor.

“Now St. Louis and Minneapolis and other places want to be more like us,” James said. “We need to keep that going. I always believe we’re building cities for our children, not for us. What we do today is for their benefit. This is absolutely vital for that.”

Another PAC formed in opposition to the ballot proposal.

On Wednesday, the group’s leader former Kansas City councilmember Becky Nace released a statement saying in part, “We stand firm in our opposition to the proposed $2 billion in additional sales tax over the next 40 years, which only serves to enrich billionaires at the expense of hardworking residents of Jackson County.”

Jackson County Executive Frank White, Jr. attended Wednesday’s announcement at Arrowhead Stadium. He is negotiating new leases between the county and teams.

He believes this should’ve been done well in advance of absentee voting which began Feb. 20.

He also wants the teams to commit to community benefit agreements detailing how they’ll hire union labor, provide workforce development opportunities and other promises.

“I think that’s been a concern of all the taxpayers and voters going to the polls is they don’t really know what they’re voting on,” White said.

The deadline to register to vote in this election is March 6.