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Group Seeks to Push New Falcons Stadium Deal on November Elections Ballot

Common Cause Georgia shares its viewpoint on the financing structure of a new football stadium for he Atlanta Falcons.
Common Cause Georgia shares its viewpoint on the financing structure of a new football stadium for he Atlanta Falcons.
EAST ATLANTA — Plans for a new $1 billion stadium for the Atlanta Falcons are moving forward, but one group is pushing to force the issue before voters this fall.

Common Cause Georgia a public interest advocacy group, is seeking 35,000 signatures to place the issue on the November ballot and letting the voters decide.

The controversial plan for the new, retractable-roof stadium includes a provision for the issuance of some $200 million in bonds that would be backed by city hotel-motel taxes to help finance the new facility.

Proponents say the hotel-motel tax is a good revenue source because those are paid by visitors to the city and the overall plan keeps the Atlanta Falcons in the city.

But Common Cause Georgia, which was at the East Atlanta Village Farmers Market Thursday seeking signatures, says that money could be better used.

in the accompanying video, Ryan Splitlog, an activist with the organization, explains to East Atlanta Patch why Common Cause Georgia is pushing to let voters decide.

What's your take on the stadium plan? Should voters get the chance to vote on the issue directly? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below.
Joe James July 15, 2013 at 10:48 AM
Ryan's claim that "there are a lot of other things we could spend this money on" was left unchallenged by the interviewer. I'd like to know what Common Cause thinks we could spend the money on. The hotel/motel tax is allocated for tourism, so what's the best use of money that has to be spent in that specific way? I'm tired of the suggestion that every little thing needs to be put to the voters in the forum of a referendum. This is why we chose a representative democracy. If you don't like the decisions that the Council makes, you should focus on trying to replace them so you get new councilors who make better decisions, not attempt to veto them with an expensive boondoggle of a referendum.
RD July 15, 2013 at 11:08 AM
I signed the petition at the EAVFM. When the project is of such a high profile as a new NFL stadium, a transfer of public money to private hands deserves more transparency and scrutiny.

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