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Qualcomm Stadium booze prices heading skyward?

Lobbyists converge at city hall to bag food and beverage deal for venue

Faulconer: “It’s so much more than an opportunity for a new sports team."
Faulconer: “It’s so much more than an opportunity for a new sports team."

Meeting privately, San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer's task force to build a new Chargers stadium says it is already making progress, having chosen a chairman — the Sycuan casino–owning tribe's Adam Day — and promising to hold one session open to the public.

Kevin Faulconer
Desmond Hague
Richard Ledford

Meanwhile, a vital component of operations at Qualcomm Stadium, the fate of food and booze prices there, is also being determined behind closed doors.

As noted here last month, three of San Diego's most influential lobbyists have been recruited by some of America's largest stadium vendors to battle for Qualcomm's lucrative food and beverage agreement, and insiders predict fans could end up paying more for their chosen brews, hard liquor, and meals.

Incumbent vendor Centerplate, whose chief executive Desmond Hague was forced out of his job after being caught on an elevator surveillance camera kicking a dog, has retained influence peddler Richard Ledford to handle its pitch for renewal.

Bob White

Ovations Fanfare, L.P., owned by media giant Comcast Corporation, has hired California Strategies, run by ex–Pete Wilson honcho Bob White.

Jason Roe
Duane Dichiara

Delaware North, yet another stadium vending behemoth, has signed up Presidio Public Affairs Group, the lobbying outfit owned by Jason Roe and his partner Duane Dichiara, Faulconer's longtime political and media consultants.

The scrum of high-dollar lobbyists has converged on city hall, where the purchasing and contracting department has extended the original closing date for proposals from February 9 until next Friday, February 20, to accommodate the golden rush of would-be contractors.

According to its January 8 request for proposals, "the City shall have the final approval on what suppliers, portions, brands and pricing are used by the Concessionaire, and at no time will Concessionaire offer an exclusive to any supplier without the prior written approval of the City."

In addition, "Concessionaire will present to City its proposed pricing for the upcoming football season menus by June 1st of each year, for City’s reasonable approval. Pricing must be competitive with the market place. Pricing at comparable venues must be provided."

Since the final future contract, including its pricing provisions, is subject to city control, having some of the mayor's best friends and political donors at the table is important, insiders note.

Currently, according to the city's solicitation, a 16-ounce liquor cup runs $15 and a 20-ounce cup of domestic draft beer costs $9; 16-ounce premium drafts go for $11 and Bloody Marys and Margaritas are $13, the document says.

Under the deal about to expire, according to the document, Centerplate's subcontractors include Oggi's Pizza, with Centerplate enjoying a 45 percent retained commission. An "Oggi's Pizza — Lightning Whole" costs $49.50, the price list says.

As for the Aztec MealDeal, "This is offered at Aztec football games only. During the season, they sold 4,734 at their games. The current foodservice provider sells the MealDeal to the customer for $8 each. $8x4734= $38,872 annually."

To a question asking, "What do they charge for press dinning [sic] during events?", the city responded, "The Chargers provide this service. The Charger organization will provide this information."

The winner of the concession would have the right of first refusal on the deal for selling food and beverages at a new stadium, if one ever gets built, the documents say.

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Faulconer: “It’s so much more than an opportunity for a new sports team."
Faulconer: “It’s so much more than an opportunity for a new sports team."

Meeting privately, San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer's task force to build a new Chargers stadium says it is already making progress, having chosen a chairman — the Sycuan casino–owning tribe's Adam Day — and promising to hold one session open to the public.

Kevin Faulconer
Desmond Hague
Richard Ledford

Meanwhile, a vital component of operations at Qualcomm Stadium, the fate of food and booze prices there, is also being determined behind closed doors.

As noted here last month, three of San Diego's most influential lobbyists have been recruited by some of America's largest stadium vendors to battle for Qualcomm's lucrative food and beverage agreement, and insiders predict fans could end up paying more for their chosen brews, hard liquor, and meals.

Incumbent vendor Centerplate, whose chief executive Desmond Hague was forced out of his job after being caught on an elevator surveillance camera kicking a dog, has retained influence peddler Richard Ledford to handle its pitch for renewal.

Bob White

Ovations Fanfare, L.P., owned by media giant Comcast Corporation, has hired California Strategies, run by ex–Pete Wilson honcho Bob White.

Jason Roe
Duane Dichiara

Delaware North, yet another stadium vending behemoth, has signed up Presidio Public Affairs Group, the lobbying outfit owned by Jason Roe and his partner Duane Dichiara, Faulconer's longtime political and media consultants.

The scrum of high-dollar lobbyists has converged on city hall, where the purchasing and contracting department has extended the original closing date for proposals from February 9 until next Friday, February 20, to accommodate the golden rush of would-be contractors.

According to its January 8 request for proposals, "the City shall have the final approval on what suppliers, portions, brands and pricing are used by the Concessionaire, and at no time will Concessionaire offer an exclusive to any supplier without the prior written approval of the City."

In addition, "Concessionaire will present to City its proposed pricing for the upcoming football season menus by June 1st of each year, for City’s reasonable approval. Pricing must be competitive with the market place. Pricing at comparable venues must be provided."

Since the final future contract, including its pricing provisions, is subject to city control, having some of the mayor's best friends and political donors at the table is important, insiders note.

Currently, according to the city's solicitation, a 16-ounce liquor cup runs $15 and a 20-ounce cup of domestic draft beer costs $9; 16-ounce premium drafts go for $11 and Bloody Marys and Margaritas are $13, the document says.

Under the deal about to expire, according to the document, Centerplate's subcontractors include Oggi's Pizza, with Centerplate enjoying a 45 percent retained commission. An "Oggi's Pizza — Lightning Whole" costs $49.50, the price list says.

As for the Aztec MealDeal, "This is offered at Aztec football games only. During the season, they sold 4,734 at their games. The current foodservice provider sells the MealDeal to the customer for $8 each. $8x4734= $38,872 annually."

To a question asking, "What do they charge for press dinning [sic] during events?", the city responded, "The Chargers provide this service. The Charger organization will provide this information."

The winner of the concession would have the right of first refusal on the deal for selling food and beverages at a new stadium, if one ever gets built, the documents say.

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4

So Juvenal's contemptuous "bread and circuses" [panem et circenses] phrase has been replaced by booze and circuses.

Feb. 13, 2015

The NFL seems determined to separate the haves from the have not.

Chargers tickets and refreshments at QUALCOMM are out of the reach of average citizens. Yet when they come around for a new stadium the average citizen will be picking up part of the tab.

Feb. 13, 2015

Yup, but in San Diego that will not include the middle class as there will be no middle class just overworked, underpaid apartment dwellers just getting by on two part time minimum wage jobs.

Feb. 13, 2015

Just in case it isn't known, this Adam Day is the son of the (in)famous Tom Day, president of SDSU for many years. Day was pushed out of the position by the CSU chancellor at the time, so that he wouldn't be the president when the school celebrated its one-hundredth birthday in 1997. Day was constantly at war with one or the other groups or individuals on campus during his lengthy tenure. He was known for being arrogant, close-minded, officious, and a one-man-show. Maybe that was what SDSU needed in that post-Vietnam War era, and perhaps history will judge him well. His many character flaws were his downfall. Can this son be much different, in that the fruit doesn't fall far from the tree?

Feb. 13, 2015

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