Local lawmaker proposes fund to cover Super Bowl security costs
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
CREATED Jan. 29, 2014
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - A Southern Arizona state lawmaker wants taxpayer dollars from across the state to help Glendale foot the bill for next year's Super Bowl.
Arizona House Majority Leader David Gowan from Sierra Vista is proposing the creation of a special event public safety reimbursement fund.
"This effort to help communities provide for the extra security required at these high profile events is about keeping Arizona's reputation solid," Gowan said.
Gowan told 9 on Your Side a terrorist attack like at last year's Boston Marathon is the last thing he wants to see at next year's Super Bowl.
"This is a public safety issue for any major event period that benefits the whole state," he said. "Public safety works best when everyone chips in."
Other local lawmakers like State Senator Steve Farley from Tucson say the economic benefits from the Super Bowl in the Phoenix Valley wont reach Southern Arizona.
"Over the years, Maricopa County has taken more than its fair share of money from people of Tucson and its time we stop that practice," Farley said.
Gowan said creating the fund will help bring future sports spectacles, such as the NCAA Final Four, to Arizona.
"We have something that New York for instance doesn't have and that's sunny weather that's not going to change," said Tucsonan Chris Sargent, who opposes Gowan's proposed bill.
The economic impact of the Super Bowl XLII in 2008 in Glendale was half a billion dollars. According to the Arizona State W.P. Carey School of Business, most visitors for that Super Bowl stayed an average of close to four nights in Arizona.