The gloves are off in Sacramento. A video reminiscent of Acorn Videos of a few years ago, has made the rounds on the local TV outlets of a petition worker who said if there would be an increase in taxes if the Arena was built. The video and a camera phone shot of a handwritten sign suggesting new taxes for the Downtown Arena has fueled the supporters of Downtown Arena.
That campaign worker is part of a group seeking to gather enough signatures to place the arena subsidy on the June 2014 ballot. Two affiliated groups are involved in that effort: STOP, a Sacramento-based committee, and Taxpayers for Safer Neighborhoods, a political action committee based in Orange County.
Reports suggest S.T.O.P has more than half the signatures needed to qualify for the Ballot.
Joshua Wood, the executive director of Region Builders, which represents building interests, told the Bee, “We believe (the public vote campaign) would not have near the number of signatures they have if they would tell the truth.”
Region Builders and Crown Downtown, a Kings fan group, have partnered to create DowntownArena.org.
That campaign announced Monday that it had crafted a form – available on its website – for voters who believe they signed the petitions in error to remove their names from that list.
The Battle on Social Media is intense
Heated conversations are filling electronic airways from the comment on the Sacramento Bee, to Facebook, websites and Twitter. Former Special Assistant to Mayor Johnson, RE Graswich has joined the discussion via Twitter.
Building an Army
Earlier this week the DowntownArena.Org placed this ad in Craigslist
DowntownArena.Org Campaign Volunteers Needed! (Sacramento)
Help us STOP the Lies by joining the DowntownArena.Org campaign effort. We are a campaign that is promoting the benefits of the Sacramento Arena. Unfortunately, a group called STOP is seeking to place a measure on the ballot that would put the funding of the Arena in jeopardy. However, we want to keep the Kings, the Arena, and the 4,000 jobs the Arena will create. So, we are seeking volunteers to help us go out and share the benefits of the Arena and debunk the misinformation of the STOP campaign. We do have some paid positions as well.
The paid position, has raised the eyebrows of some in the city. Is someone in City Hall giving orders to downtown Org?
Common Cause Georgia is in the process of organizing a petition drive to seek 35,000 signatures in sixty days so that the City of Atlanta will have to hold a referendum on public funding of Billion Dollar Stadium for the Atlanta Falcons.
Groups are forming in Milwaukee, as the owner and the NBA wants a new home for the Milwaukee Bucks
One of the most under reported stories of the week is Detroit. The city leaders of this bankrupt city has plans to use public funds to build an Hockey Arena downtown.