We’re Standing Up, Not Getting Rolled-Over

We would like to respond to Miles Barbers latest “Milestones” Editorial published on January 6, 2016, regarding the take-over and destruction of the Santa Clara Youth Soccer Park by the City of Santa Clara and the NFL.

Mr. Barber,

We would like to respond to Miles Barbers latest “Milestones” Editorial published on January 6, 2016, regarding the take-over and destruction of the Santa Clara Youth Soccer Park by the City of Santa Clara and the NFL. 

First, we would like to clarify some of your points with a fact check:

  • The 2013 Super Bowl Agreement between the NFL and City of Santa Clara to host #SuperBowl50 excludes use of the Soccer Park and Golf Course. Specific use of the golf course and Soccer Park were to be added with an addendum to the agreement. That addendum contract was hidden from the soccer community and signed 12/24/2015.
  • The City of Santa Clara broke their own ordinance and gave the fields to the NFL without the required public hearing process.
  • The City of Santa Clara withheld information to SCYSL about how the NFL planned to use the soccer park until 12/15/2015.
  • The City of Santa Clara never communicated details about use of Soccer Park for the Super Bowl during any of the City’s Ad-Hoc Soccer Committee Meetings.
  • The City of Santa Clara failed to provide our kids adequate training and regulation playing fields. Soccer field availability is a scarce resource and not easy to acquire due to soccer league district boundaries, and in in some cases cost of operations (eg. – renting SCU Buck Shaw Stadium can cost $17k per game).
  • Over the past 10 years, SCYSL has paid fees totaling in the tens of thousands of dollars.

The Soccer Community is supportive of our city hosting the Super Bowl, but not at the cost of illegal, irresponsible and reckless management of city property ending in damage to the world class soccer facility. Our intent was simple: to get the behemoth Super Bowl media center built on the Youth Soccer parking lot, or the 49ers parking lot, or the 49ers fields that are not in use until May.  

Everyone asks this simple question, “why did the media center end-up destroying the soccer park fields?” What is the motivation and who were the authors of this toxic plan? And who is watching out for the kids and our city property?

People in Santa Clara and around the country connect the dots between our local NFL franchise and certain elected Santa Clara City Officials who are eager to use closed door council meetings and backroom deals to further benefit the red and gold.

You write, “They (Santa Clara residents) recognize however, the value of community and cooperation and civic responsibility. They pay their taxes so we can have schools, senior services, parks and soccer fields for our residents to use and enjoy.”

What do you say to the Santa Clara residents that pay their taxes to build parks and soccer fields, then watch our city officials roll-over and allow the NFL to destroy our property when other options were available to prevent destruction. We don’t think community values, cooperation and civic responsibility are aligned with the destruction of soccer park for a 1-day football game. 

The kids and parents in the soccer community have been lied to and bullied. What have we taught the kids? That money and influence will buy anything. That Anything’s Possible! 

We need change at City Hall, for there was no Open, Transparent and Honest Communication between the City and the Youth Soccer Community.  And the soccer community is not exclusive to this practice of duck and cover at the City Council.

We are Standing Up for Santa Clara!

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