Stadium Authority Recap – Have the 49ers Given the City a Dungeon or a Maximum Security Prison for a So-Called Community Room?

By Robert Haugh

There weren’t any temper tantrums, tirades or heated discussions at last night’s Stadium Authority meeting. Oh well.

The major topic of the one-hour meeting was the framework and use guidelines of the Levi’s stadium so-called “community room.”  We wrote last week that what the 49ers are offering is pathetic.

Last night, every Board member had harsh words for the not-so-available and not-so-pretty 3,200 square foot space. Even strong 49ers supporters Patty Mahan and Dominic Caserta echoed comments from many that the so-called community room is not acceptable.  It’s a windowless, bathroom-less basement that will cost community groups $2,500 or more to use. And that’s not what the 49ers promised during the Measure J campaign.

Chair Lisa Gillmor called the so-called community room the “windowless dungeon below the stadium,” while Charter Review Committee member and community activist Hosam Haggag compared the room to a maximum security prison.


The item will return to the Board for action on December 12. The majority of the Board asked for a detailed breakdown of the $2,500 meeting room usage costs, which the 49ers say is for security, janitorial, audio-visual setup and other costs. Let’s hope the Board stands up to the 49ers and for the community on this.

49ers Ticket Dumping Scheme?

A public presentation was made by a 49er season ticket holder who did not identify himself. The mystery man alleges that the 49ers are “ticket dumping” and causing SBL defaults since season ticket holders like him can’t get rid of their tickets for a reasonable price. According to the speaker, several SBL holders are furious about this. He put together an interesting 3-minute Powerpoint presentation with some evidence of how the ticket dumping works.  It starts at the 13:35 mark. The council by consensus asked for city staff to review and report back. This might be noteworthy.

Audit, Part 2

Under public presentations, community activist and local businessman Kirk Vartan asked that the 37 discrepancies found during the audit should be shared and asked about what changes have been implemented. He also asked about part two of the Harvey Rose Measure J audit. Gillmor said that the audit committee meetings will re-start on November 27. Let’s hope they meet in the council chambers and not the so-called community room, because if we attend, we want a bathroom nearby.

Board member Pat Kolstad was absent from the meeting.


  1. Mad mom … go talk to you school board trustees and find out what they are doing with YOUR TAX money. And what they did with all the redevelopment money they just got from the State of California from the City of Santa Clara … oh wait, they gave it their unions, didn’t they? And what they did with all the money that Jed promised the stadium would give to the schools? Oh right, that was a bold face lie!

    If you are unhappy with your school facilities you need to hold your school unions, administrators and trustees responsible. Check out how they are spending your tax money and the statistics on how many administrators SCUSD has and how well paid they are too. Seems that district has the most & that they may be among the highest paid in the state too … go ask the right agency and hold them accountable and get that fixed. You may be right, they may be wasting your money or spending it foolishly and not on your children. Go see how many trips those people take on your dime too.

  2. Hey Madmom, read the article. OK? This is about non-profits/charities using a community room at Levi’s Stadium. The council just wants to make sure the room is OK for the groups that may want to use the room and that there isn’t an overcharge. That seems reasonable.

  3. Dear Madmom: The City of Santa Clara does not fund schools or school playgrounds. Money to school districts come from: The State of California, the local Unified School District such as the Santa Clara Unified School District, which has nothing to do with the City. Wikipedia, for example, shows the spread of the District – which includes schools in San Jose, Alviso, Sunnyvale and Santa Clara. If you want to complain about funding for a school or set of schools, contact the Unified offices:

  4. Having recently been to Levi stadium on a school field trip, I found many of the spaces to be serviceable, but somewhat dreary. This doesn’t bother me in the least, as I consider most of this monstrosity to be a lavish waste of money, and it pleases me to think somebody actually cared enough to not waste funds when it wasn’t necessary.

    What doesn’t please me is that the city council has the audacity to complain about a brand new meeting room, when middle school students right down the street can’t play tennis during PE because the tennis courts are so neglected and decayed, that it is a safety issue to even walk through there. It looks so bad it could be considered blight, and attracts crime after school in the form of drug dealing and graffiti. I got to play tennis in middle school, here in Santa Clara, and it makes me burn that my kids aren’t able to do this.

    Levi has wonderful bathrooms on the next level – plain, but still much nicer than what middle school students have. Perhaps I will feel sorry for the city council members having to hike up to the bathroom, AFTER every problem at our public schools is given the same amount of attention as their unattractive conference room.

  5. Is there an organization that rates the trustworthiness of sports teams? We should nominate the 49ers for least trustworthy.

  6. Are there any actual pictures of this room? Maybe the 49ers can arrange a public tour to show us how wonderful it is and why it is worth charging citizens $2500 to use a room they paid for.

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