This afternoon, Wednesday August 15th, Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson called the media to his office to issue a new statement about the University of South Alabama Stadium proposal.
You can watch his comments in the Facebook video below. He is essentially saying that the Mobile City Council should vote on the deal that was originally proposed. He also seemed to express frustration on how the council is handling negotiations in the deal.
I have watched the video, and have attempted to transcribe some of what the Mayor says in the video for you. I say 'attempted' because I may have misunderstood some of what he said. The audio on the video is a bit on the low side.
Here is some of what he said about what the USA Deal has started to morph into:
"But then there would begin to be these conversations out in the community by various city councilors about, well, 'If we're gonna do, spend this money at South Alabama, we need to spend ten million dollars or so in Mayesville,'or 'we need to spend, you know, five or ten million dollars in the Hillsdale community.' So what started out as a very simple conversation with these two numbers, then, not only was it about doing those two, kind of the conversation yesterday, and the reason it drug out was, I was being asked to do a letter of intent to the USA board for ten million dollars because we want to spend ten million dollars out at South, and that ten million dollars would be going to the board, and so if you add up the ten for Mayesville, let's say it's ten for Hillsdale, and if you add another ten for the Ladd project, all of a sudden what was an affordable deal was now not only a bad deal, it was not affordable from my perspective."
The Mayor went on to say this:
"I had promised the citizens and the voters of Mobile when I was elected that I would be a good steward of the tax dollars. But I also promised to myself that I wouldn't be involved in doing side deals to garner votes to get a proposition passed. And so all of sudden it dawned on me what I was doing was something that I said to myself I wasn't going to do. So at that point in time, I can just say, over the last four and a half years, to my knowledge, we have not traded anything for a vote when it comes to things that have been before the city council."