LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — An effort to force a vote on public financing for the A’s baseball stadium on the Strip has lost in court, according to attorney Bradley Schrager.
Schrager told 8 News Now a Carson City judge struck down the “Schools Over Stadiums” petition on multiple grounds, and told organizers they can’t collect signatures for it. Schrager’s law firm, Bravo Schrager, filed a lawsuit to stop the petition in late September.
The effort to get state public financing removed from the stadium project was pushed by the Nevada State Education Associations. A social post on X Monday evening by @EduOverStadiums indicated the organizers intend to file an appeal or refile the petition. The complete statement appears at the bottom of this story.
Several labor unions sued to get the petition thrown out. Unions testified in favor of the A’s stadium funding during a special session of the Nevada Legislature in June, throwing their support behind the project and the jobs it would bring.
The referendum petition was filed on Sept. 6. It targeted the stadium financing — a combined $380 million of state and county funding. The petition only targeted the state portion of the funding.
Taxpayers and political groups protested the deal for a $1.5 billion stadium on the Las Vegas Strip during testimony before the bill passed, and public sentiment has simmered since then.
“Schools Over Stadiums has been committed to pursuing every possible path to stop the use of public funds to subsidize a billionaire’s stadium and that has always included putting the question to Nevada voters who were effectively shut out of the process,” Dawn Etcheverry, a music teacher and president of NSEA and Schools Over Stadiums, said when the petition was filed in September.
The petition would have needed 102,362 signatures — more than 25,590 from each of Nevada’s four congressional districts — just to get on the November 2024 ballot.
Major League Baseball owners are expected vote this month whether to approve the Oakland Athletics’ move to Las Vegas.
A $1.5 billion, 30,000-seat stadium at the intersection of Tropicana Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard is expected to be ready for the start of the 2028 MLB season.
Schools Over Stadiums offered this comment on Monday:
“When you take on billionaires, it’s never easy. While the decision is disappointing, it’s not uncommon. Educators overcome obstacles every day, especially in a state ranked 48th in the nation. We’re undeterred and still committed to giving Nevada voters the opportunity to decide whether their tax dollars are used to subsidize a billionaire’s stadium. Schools Over Stadiums will appeal this decision to the Supreme Court and/or refile the referendum petition. As the judge pointed out, there’s plenty of time before the signature deadline in July of 2024. We remain confident Nevada voters will choose schools over stadiums next November.”