SAN DIEGO -- A ballot measure that would have raise hotel occupancy taxes to help pay for a new stadium for the San Diego Chargers has failed to pass.
Measure C, which was written by the Chargers without input from San Diego City Hall, the powerful tourism industry or other stakeholders, failed to pass 57 percent to 43 percent, according to unofficial results published by the San Diego County Registrar's Office on Wednesday.
It's unclear what the Chargers' next step will be in their long, twisting effort to replace aging Qualcomm Stadium.
Team chairman Dean Spanos has said he wanted to see the percentages before deciding whether to negotiate with Mayor Kevin Faulconer on a new plan or exercise his option to join the Los Angeles Rams in a stadium scheduled to open in Inglewood in 2019.
On Wednesday afternoon, the Chargers released a statement from Spanos regarding the Measure C outcome:
First and foremost, I want to thank everyone who worked so hard throughout this campaign. From the Chamber of Commerce to the Building Trades and organized labor, from the fan groups to the volunteers who helped us collect more than 110,000 signatures and knock on more than 50,000 doors. Every member of the Chargers organization will be forever grateful for your tremendous help and steadfast support.
This has been a long campaign, and I'm sure we all want to put aside stadium talk for a while and focus on the rest of the Chargers' season. Our team, with its mix of veteran leaders and young stars, has played some of the most exciting football in the NFL so far, and I can't wait to see how we do throughout the rest of the season. Our players have shown great heart and resilience in the NFL's toughest division. I'm eager -- as I'm sure you all are -- to give the stadium debate a rest and enjoy some Chargers football.
So I'm going to put aside any discussion of our possible next steps until after the season, to allow everyone to focus on football and to give my family and me time to think carefully about what is best for the future of our franchise. Over the coming weeks you may hear news about steps that we must take to preserve all of our options. But please know that I don't intend to make any decisions until after the regular season ends and that, in the meantime, I hope to enjoy with you one great Chargers game after another.
Despite the fact that Measure C failed to receive a two-thirds majority, I wanted to reach out right away with a very sincere thank you for your loyal support as a fan and for considering our initiative.
There is much we can be proud of tonight: the 110,000 residents who qualified the measure in just six short weeks; the vocal and passionate support from our fan groups and corporate partners; the strong endorsements and hard work of numerous civic, business, and labor leaders; and the heartfelt efforts of our alumni and players.
In terms of what comes next for the Chargers, it's just too early to give you an answer. We are going to diligently explore and weigh our options, and do what is needed to maintain our options, but no decision will be announced until after the football season concludes and no decision will be made in haste.
The outpouring of support from friends like you, and so many others, has been heartwarming throughout the campaign and I will continue to be mindful of that in the weeks ahead. Thank you, again, for believing in the Chargers. Everyone on the team and in my family appreciates your loyal support and continued patience, and we look forward to an exciting rest of the season.