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Voters reject Question 1, sales tax to help fund Chiefs, Royals stadiums

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Posted at 9:16 PM, Apr 02, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-02 23:00:23-04

KANAS CITY, Mo. — Voters on Tuesday rejected Question 1, a sales tax that would've helped help fund stadium projects for the Kansas City Chiefs and Royals stadiums for the next 40 years.

Passing Question 1 would've repealed a previous 3/8-cent sales tax that's been in effect since 2006 and replaced it with new tax of the same rate.

It was slated to expire in 2031.

Fifty eight percent of voters in Jackson County and Kansas City voted against the sales tax compared to 42% who voted in favor of it, according to unofficial voting results.

Using the funding, the Royals intended to build a new ballpark in the Crossroads District located in downtown Kansas City, Missouri.

The Chiefs would've used the funding to renovate GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium.

Both teams reiterated they would explore all options on the team's future in the county if the tax failed, though they didn't further elaborate.

READ | Full stadium sales tax coverage

In weeks leading up to the vote, both supporters and those who opposed the tax bolstered their efforts to sway people into a "yes" or "no" vote.

Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt and Royals Chairman and CEO John Sherman sat down with KSHB 41 last week to discuss the tax and why they believe it will benefit the community.

Groups like KC Tenants, the Missouri Workers Coalition and others canvassed and spoke out against the tax.

KC Tenants even dropped a "Vote No" banner during the Royals home opener last week, while the coalition and others held rallies.

Jackson County Executive Frank White Jr. was among those who prominently opposed the sales tax, trading barbs on multiple occasions with the teams, county legislators and a committee hired by the teams to convince people to vote yes.

On March 20, the teams released terms for a proposed community benefits agreement with Jackson County.

The teams touted the terms as the largest in the history of Kansas City.

But White was again unhappy with the terms, questioning their validity and whether there's a way to hold the teams accountable to the promises made in the CBA.

Still, the teams continued activity on their end, agreeing to new lease terms with Jackson County Sports Complex Authority.

Both the CBA and lease agreements were contingent on the sales tax passing, with the Jackson County Legislature needing to approve the new terms.