Mayor of Glendale, Arizona, says city will lose money hosting Super Bowl
The mayor of Glendale, Ariz., the host of Super Bowl XLIX, expects his city will lose money staging the game. "I totally believe we will lose money on this," mayor Jerry Weiers told ESPN's Mina Kimes.
University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale also hosted Super Bowl XLII in 2008. This will be the first Super Bowl at the stadium since Weiers was elected in 2012.
Weiers has said that the 2008 game also left Glendale in the red, a claim that Cardinals president Michael Bidwill disputes. Bidwill called the claim "mularkey," according to KTAR, adding, "They were telling people after that Super Bowl that they made a lot of money, and that they had about $13 million worth of media exposure to the city of Glendale."
Last February, Weiers said his city's budget deficit could soon be as high as $30 million. As a result, the city sought state funding to provide for public safety at the Super Bowl. The state House of Representatives approved a bill in March to reimburse Glendale for those costs, but the state Senate rejected it with a 16-10 vote in April. The city expects to pay $3.2 million on public safety, an increase from the $2.3 million it spent in 2008, according to the Associated Press.
Another potentially expensive aspect of hosting the game is the three-day fan festival to be held across the street from the stadium. Glendale city councilman Sam Chavira said the festival "will not cost Glendale any money," according to The Arizona Republic. DIRECTV, the event's sponsor, "expects the festival to bring a $3 million to $4 million impact to the local community," the Republic reports, but Weiers said it was unclear how much money it would make for the city.
Not all Super Bowl-related events will be held in Glendale. Nearby Phoenix and other areas of the Valley of the Sun will also host some events, such as Super Bowl Media Day.
- Dan Gartland