San Jose, A’s Re-Up Land Deal in Hopes of Bringing Team South

In a deal reached Thursday with the Oakland Athletics, San Jose just bought more time to try wooing the team to a new ballpark in downtown.

The agreement comes a few months after the baseball team signed off on a 10-year lease extension to stay in Oakland, according to the Mercury News. That contract includes an out, though, which would allow the team to move if another spot opened up within the decade.

San Jose’s deal, pending City Council approval, would give the city more time to convince the courts or Major League Baseball to allow the A’s to move south. The San Francisco Giants have blocked the move, claiming they own territorial rights to the region.

The A’s make annual payments to San Jose to reserve public land near the Diridon Station hub in downtown, with hopes that eventually they can ask voters to approve the construction of new ballpark. A's owner Lew Wolff previously put down a deposit on the land, and the deal was about to expire next month. The renewal pushes that sunset date out to 2021 and would allow the A’s to purchase more parcels—at a cost of $7 million for 5 acres—for the construction of the ballpark.

The new agreement gives San Jose $100,000 over the next four years to hold the land, with three one-year extensions.

Nearly six years ago, MLB Commissioner Bud Selig said he’d look into the move, but still has not made findings from a blue-ribbon committee public.

Tired of the wait, San Jose sued MLB last year, but lost the case in the lower court. The city can appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, which could drag the ordeal on for several more years.

8 Comments

  1. How can a City scream its too broke to Honor it word to Employees , still be trying to bring the Oakland A’s to San Jose. Just another pathetic attempt by this truly Pathetic Mayor and Council . Huge A’s fan , But seriously don’t see the A’s coming to San Jose.

  2. Silicon Valley Newsroom

    You should have included in your article the amount of taxpayer monies, via the defunct Redevelopment Agency, was spent on these properties. I believe the cost was $25.2 Million taxpayer dollars.

    Then you have the Mayor Reed and the majority of Council “Gifting” of these public lands to Mr. Wolff for a mere pittance of $7 Million using option contracts to do so. You are correct that the original option contracts will expire November 2014. The “New option contracts” were hiinted at during RULES on Wednesday.

    Meanwhile, the debt service clock on the original purchase amount ($25.2 Million), is still ticking very loudly in the ears of the taxpayers.

    There are additional egregious misuse of governmental authority concerning the aquisition of the aforementioned properties. The properties were never “officially” purchased for a “baseball stadium.”

    It is of interest to note that the aforementioned “baseball-properties” are listed in the Long Range Property Management Plan by the Successor Agency. The Long Range Property Management Plan are properties purchased by the Redevlopment Agency and some are reccomended to be sold at great losses to the taxpayers.

    David S. Wall

  3. Although I am not a huge BB fan, I’d love to see the A’s in SJ under the right conditions. However, $25k/year for an option on $25 million worth of land is a lousy deal for taxpayers. The most serious impediment to the A’s is Bud Selig’s inaction. Can’t we just put him at home plate and have A’s pitchers bean him until he makes a decision one way or another? Guess not.

    If the A’s and MLB make a money deal with the Giants to allow the A’s to come to SJ, we must make sure that the same outfit that did the traffic study portion of the EIR for Levi’s Stadium is not hired to make absurdly optimistic prognostications about the traffic impact of a stadium at the proposed location. Those Bozos were clearly either terminally stupid or paid off.

  4. This is obscene. This deal would effectively tie the hands of the next 2 mayoral terms. The lame duck Chuck Reed at most should extend the deal 6 months and let the new mayor and city council decide what direction to take the city. The amount of taxpayer money involved is huge even if we don’t pay for the building itself. The city is already in debt for BILLIONS of dollars for the airport alone. Meanwhile the residents and taxpayers suffer from poor city services, increased response time from both fire and Police and I can’t even get a pothole fixed.

  5. Be careful what you wish for.

    If San Jose gets the A’s, it also gets their left-wing co-owner Guy Saperstein, a big fan of Elizabeth “Pocahontas” Warren.

    http://www.politico.com/story/2014/10/hillary-clinton-donors-2016-elections-111622.html

    Saperstein may not be ready for Hillary, but he is “Ready for Elizabeth”.

    I wonder who Sappy thought Elizabeth was talking to when she explained that “you didn’t build that business”.

    But, maybe he DIDN’T build it. Maybe it just came as an accessory with his free Obama-phone.

    In any case, I’ve lost interest in building the business premises for Saperstein’s baseball team.

    Oakland can keep the A’s and keep Sappy.

  6. Jack Slade Speaks

    Your Mayor, a real estate attorney and your council, have been using the San Jose Redevelopment Agency, NOW BANKRUPT to buy up all the parcels to be used for a stadium. They worked with their outside business partners to triple flip these properties and deplete a $300,000,000 kiddy. Al your pals a City Hall got in on the deal and then the “A”‘s move died. One of the property deals went like this. Sam Liccardo has a dentist friend who opened up a drug rehab center in a $500,000.00+ residential area in his district. It was set up on a sliver of land across from the neighborhood community park. Then the neighborhood complained and Sam supposedly said “I wish I could help, but this is America”.
    Now being an attorney, also in Real Estate, he voted no for an expansion of the Drug Rehab Center knowing that was discrimination. So the dentist running the Rehab and living and working in Sunnyvale (no rehab center there) sues in Federal Court. The City Attorney, “Slick Rick Doyle” makes so many legal missteps despite having a $30,000,000.00 budget and 95 attorneys throws in the towel.

    The Cost to Taxpayers:

    Sam says the sliver of land will be an excellent train station drop off for fans going to “A”s games at the “Parcel Flipping” down town. So, to settle” the City buys the sliver of land (purchased for peanuts) for $2,095,000.00. Then the City tells the dentist from Sunnyvale that he can keep his portable buildings. He can continue his rehab business and HE ONLY HAS TO PAY A $1.00 a year until the never to be built Stadium is built. Now the City is giving the parcels away for pea nuts. Now Governor Brown wants all the money back and all the City has is $85,000,000.00 worth of DEEDS they blew hundreds of millions for. You see you can’t go down to the City cash register and stick your hand in the till but you can tax people, put the money in an unsupervised fund and then use REAL ESTATE sales to make your self rich in the future. Now some people wanted to look into zoning votes but Mayor Reed who is now a “One Man” law firm that represents his previous Law Partnership says I don’t have to reveal the inner workings of my clients because it is a Lawyer/Client relationship and you can’t see what my votes produce.

    Let’s get something clear, you can’t go to jail for making terrible political decisions unless they cause so much unexplained financial loss that it appears as a future profit conspiracy. That’s why Reed and Sam are sweating trying to get a team and a stadium. That will make the crimes evaporate and go away. No team, no stadium and when Brown and Kamala are re-elected INDICTMENTS when they are handed worthless deeds to reimburse the stolen Redevelopment money.

  7. What I have learned in the mayor reed san jose, developers make money, that is holy and they are far more important than the average citizen. I get that. Money is king and winner takes all. This current council has gutted this city, but developers made money so its ok, citizens have been terrorized by gangs, crime etc, but developers made money. Shame on them. Of course that means nothing, the average citizen in San Jose can wrote in hell.