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Santa Clara Settles Lawsuit with 49ers

Update: City of Santa Clara spokesperson Michelle Templeton replied to The Weekly after publication with the following comment: “Consistent with the resolution of the litigation, the 49ers have developed practices to provide more transparency with the Santa Clara Stadium Authority, comply with contractual and legal obligations, and have agreed to greater operational efficiencies. In addition, the 49ers have agreed to monetary terms.”

You can find the complete settlement agreement in the following link:  49ers City of Santa Clara Settlement Agreement.

Much of the legal back and forth between the City of Santa Clara and the 49ers is now in the past.


In closed session on Aug. 30, the City Council considered the “best and final” settlement offer from the 49ers. The Council countered again, a counter which was accepted by the 49ers on Aug. 31.

“Today’s agreement represents the beginning of a renewed partnership between the 49ers and the City of Santa Clara,” said 49ers Chief Communications & Public Affairs Officer Rahul Chandhok shortly after the deal was done. “We’re pleased to put this fight behind us for the benefit of Santa Clara’s residents and the stakeholders who rely on Levi’s Stadium for jobs, revenue, and entertainment.”

The final offer includes an extra $325,000 for Santa Clara’s general fund, bringing the total to $1.675 million.

The rest of the deal is the same as was previously reported. It includes a $650,000 transfer from the Stadium Authority’s discretionary fund to the general fund, $650,000 from the 49ers to pay down construction debt and $2.2 million in public safety costs. The 49ers will also forgive $350,000 in interest charges and late payments owed to the Stadium Authority by the City.

As we previously reported, settling this litigation should also help reduce Santa Clara’s $19.6 million operating deficit by 20%.

Public Split on Lawsuit Settlement

The decision came after much public comment prior to the City Council’s closed session. Some residents presented concerns about what a deal would mean for future dealings with the team.

“I would urge you to consider all of the current and future rights that you would be waiving. There may be issues that may arise in the future that we can’t anticipate now and if the release bars the City from raising those issues, it would be unfortunate,” said one resident.

Others say the City faces a deficit and settling these lawsuits is important not just for the City but for the sake of local small businesses.

“I want to emphasize that live events at Levi’s are a lifeline to our business community,” said Melanie. “Continuing to waste millions of dollars a year on legal fees would be foolish. Let’s please settle this dispute. As a concerned citizen, the stadium is here to stay and we want to continue bringing live events to Santa Clara.”

Santa Clara Marriott General Manager Chris Sullivan echoed the sentiment and told the Council his hotel sees a huge difference on days when there are events at Levi’s Stadium.

Lawsuits Still Pending

While this will settle several lawsuits on the books for the past five years, it will not completely end the courtroom battles between the two parties.

As The Weekly has previously reported, there are still two other legal disputes pending. The sides are still at odds over who should pay for the buffet in the priciest club seats and which party is responsible for some public safety expenditures.

The 49ers say the contract is clear, the team pays up to a specific amount for public safety and anything above that is paid from the Stadium Authority’s discretionary reserve. However, the City says the 49ers should be responsible for paying the entire cost of public safety for events at Levi’s Stadium.

Both sides continue to negotiate these issues. The 49ers have previously said the team hopes to have the final two lawsuits settled by the end of the year.


  1. Davy L 2 years ago

    Hip, Hip, Hooray! Congrats to the 49ers and our City Council, especially to Jain, Park, Hardy, and Becker! This is estimated to reduce our city deficit from $27 million to $19.6 million.

    • Colin Bakel 2 years ago

      I’m shocked and surprised to hear the city has a deficit. After all, Council Member Kathy Watanabe, in the leadup to the 2020 election stated in a zoom “Meet the Candidates” night the city wasn’t facing a deficit after Harbir brought it up.

      Perhaps Council Member Watanabe also has memory problems?

      • Davy L 2 years ago

        Also, Council member Watanabe brought up a motion, in an attempt, to delay the proceedings, by insisting that an outside independent study is required before further action is taken on the 49er proposal. Her motion soundly defeated 4-2 (Jain, Park, Hardy, Becker).

  2. SVV owned by 49ers too? 2 years ago

    If anyone wants a balanced view of who Mayor Gilmor is up against?

    • Davy L 2 years ago

      This is definitely not a “balance” view. This San Francisco writer needs to observer all the problems and failures of her own city before criticizing, dumping, and unloading all of her hypocrisies and venom on us. I find her article to be outright sickening and revolting to read. She imagines the worse and then insists that an even deeper hell will follow. Well, I certainly do not share her views at all. Our current City Council has done well. We now have a six District voting system. Our City Council is now more representative of our population. We have rid ourselves of two very polarizing individuals: Deanna Santana and Brian Doyle. My prediction is that better times are ahead.

      • SVV owned by 49ers too? 2 years ago

        So you are okay having the 49ers run Santa Clara….

        Pay close attention the line just under the picture “San Francisco Examiner promotion in partnership with the San Francisco 49ers”

        • Davy L 2 years ago

          It’s a nice article. I didn’t realize the Examiner was still in service. I have their website now bookmarked on to my browser. Thanks for the information. However, as for your other comments concerning the 49ers, thanks but no thanks. What you are offering up here is a lot of bunk. Sorry, but no dice.

  3. Jill B. 2 years ago

    Balanced? Try the Chronicle for accurate reporting…

    Becker is unhinged screaming at both Watanabe and Mayor Gillmor F-you like a pissed off teenager a few few weeks ago. I’m glad the 48ers are backing the unhinged candidate and not the person who has never been in the teams pocket. If Gillmor doesn’t win…I’m concerned for the safety of the council members that dare to go against him.

    Who does that in a professional environment?!

    Glad the lawsuit is over but for accurate reporting in the city, go to the Chronicle.

    • Davy L 2 years ago

      I enjoy reading the Chronicle, but this particular writer is a profit of doom, sowing lots of discontent and hatred. As for becoming a “company” town, our city is in no more in danger of that, than is San Francisco. Santa Clara voters approved measure J way back in 2010 (before Lisa Gillmor) because our city wanted the team and the stadium. They still do.
      However, Lisa Gillmor and her “crew” were against the ballot measure. They placed a ridiculous 10pm curfew on concert events. They squandered the cities resources on lawsuits and investigations that cost more than the returns would have been even if they were successful. But a funny thing happened, when the six District voter measure (strongly opposed by Lisa Gillmor) was approved by our city. Immediately, two of her “cronies” was disposed of by Karen Hardy and Raj Chahal. Two years later, another 3 more members of her “crew” were replaced by Jain, Park, and Becker. Finally, the animosity was over and settlement with the 48ers was concluded.

      • Carolyn Schuk 2 years ago

        Small correction: Lisa Gillmor chaired the Measure J committee and helped spend $5 million in 49ers money to pass it. She appeared in TV ads to promote it:

        • Davy L 2 years ago

          Oops! Sorry, Carolyn, thanks for your correction, and please accept my apologies. So, Lisa Gillmor may have been guilty in the past of accepting 49ers money, also. Anyways, it’s always good to hear from you.

  4. Carolyn Schuk 2 years ago

    We appreciate readers like you Davy who engage in the conversation:)

    • Davy L 2 years ago

      Wow! You just made my day! Also, I wish to add how much I really enjoy and look forward to reading all your many articles and always found them to be very informative and very well written. Please keep up your good work:)

  5. Carolyn Schuk 2 years ago

    Thank you, Davy, for your kind words. Our readers are our reason for being and the motivation to make sure that our journalism is always factual and carefully researched:)

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