Morning Fizz

Afternoon Fizz: Council Likely to Hold Off on Arena Vote

By Erica C. Barnett August 9, 2012

Two afternoon Fizz items.

1. Fizz hears that the city council is locked in negotiations with arena proponent Chris Hansen, and probably won't take a vote on the arena before its annual summer recess, which starts in late August and runs through September 4.

A proposed memorandum of understanding between the city and Hansen (already signed by the King County Council) still hasn't been voted out of arena skeptic Tim Burgess' finance committee, which meets for the final time before recess next Wednesday, August 15. Even if the committee approved the proposal then, it would take a special meeting of the full council to approve the MOU before recess.

No one we talked to would say on the record what specific issues were holding up negotiations, but the council's letter asked Hansen to modify the proposed agreement to give them more information about his arena partners' financial situations; to provide more guarantees that the city won't lose its potential $120 million investment; and to put some of the arena revenue towards bonds that could pay for things like transportation improvements in the surrounding area, rather than pouring all proceeds into paying for the arena itself.

2. Noel Frame, who made it through Tuesday night's primary along with fellow Democrat Gael Tarleton, a Seattle Port Commissioner, won the sole endorsement of the Washington State Labor Council today, the umbrella group for state labor unions.

Tarleton, who has backing from some state unions, angered the state's Teamsters Union by not backing legislation that would have given independent contract truckers at the Port better benefits.

The news that Frame got the WSLC endorsement is not a big surprise. The Teamsters lobbied hard at the WSLC's convention earlier this year, helping swing their primary endorsement to Frame and green jobs candidate Brett Phillips, who was ousted on Tuesday night.
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