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As Kansas lawmakers make pitch to Chiefs, Missouri legislator calls for special session to keep team in state

GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium.jpeg
Posted at 4:22 PM, Jun 05, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As Kansas lawmakers bolster their efforts to lure the Kansas City Chiefs across the state line, a Missouri legislator wants take action to ensure the team stays in the state.

Missouri Rep. Mark Sharp (D - Jackson County), who represents voters in Missouri’s 37th district, has asked Gov. Mike Parson to call a special session on the issue.

Sharp's request comes a day after two top Kansas lawmakers reached out to Chiefs chairman and CEO Clark Hunt and pitched Kansas as a new home for the team.

"I’m not optimistic about where things stand currently,” Sharp told KSHB 41 News over the phone Wednesday. “I’ve never seen the Kansas Legislature move so viciously to steal one of our teams.”

Kansas Senate President Ty Masterson (R - Andover) and House Speaker Dan Hawkins (R - Wichita) penned a letter to Hunt and invited him to engage in conversations at an upcoming special session that's set to begin June 18.

Masterson and Hawkins hope to entice the team to move through a Professional Sports Franchise STAR Bond Project.

The pair said the Kansas legislature will discuss the STAR bonds during the special session.

The Chiefs said they would explore other options on where to house the team after Jackson County voters soundly rejected Question 1, which would've secured funding for stadium projects for the Chiefs and Royals.

Sharp says he wants Missouri to be just as competitive as Kansas in presenting a plan to the Chiefs.

The legislator says he’s heard from his constituents who didn’t realize the ramifications of voting no on Question 1 could have meant the Chiefs would leave Jackson County and Missouri.

“Jackson County residents deserve another bite at the apple,” Sharp said.

Sharp is calling on Republican leaders in Missouri and Parson to stand up and take action.

“It starts with a special session,” Sharp said.

Asked about Sharp's request, a spokesperson for Parson's office said the governor would do what he could to keep the Chiefs in Missouri.

The spokesperson didn't immediately comment on the possibility of a special session itself.

"The Kansas City Chiefs have a long, rich history at Arrowhead Stadium, and we remain optimistic that their story will continue in Missouri for generations to come," Johnathan Shiflett, deputy communications director and press secretary for Parson, said in a statement. "Governor Parson will do what he can to keep the Chiefs in Missouri. The Chiefs are Missouri’s team, and Governor Parson continues conversations with the team’s leadership to ensure that remains."