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L.A. council committee approves AEG's downtown stadium agreements

September 24, 2012 | 11:50 am

ME.Leiweke

This post has been corrected. See below for details.

The Los Angeles City Council’s committee devoted to the downtown stadium approved an array of agreements Monday dealing with the $1.5 billion stadium and convention center upgrade, sending the package to the full council for a final vote Friday.

Included in the package was the project’s environmental impact report. Once the council votes, critics of the project have 30 days to file a legal challenge. Under special legislation passed in Sacramento for AEG, any legal challenge must be resolved in the courts within 175 days.

[For the Record, Sept. 24, 1:45 p.m.: An earlier version of this post misstated the number of days that stadium critics have to file a legal challenge against the project.]

Early in the meeting, the top executive of the firm proposing to develop an NFL stadium in downtown apologized to city lawmakers for “the disturbance and the disruption” caused by last week's announcement that the company is being sold.

Faced with questions from council members nervous about entering into a contract with a company that's up for sale, Anschutz Entertainment Group President Tim Leiweke said he and his management team have signed new “long-term contracts” to keep working at AEG. He said it was better that city officials knew about the potential sale before voting later this week on the company's proposal.

Leiweke also said a new owner will help the company secure an NFL football team.

“Let me apologize for the disturbance and the disruption of the process,” Leiweke told the Ad Hoc Committee on the Proposed Downtown Stadium and Event Center. "That’s my fault. I take full blame for that.”

News that Anschutz Co. was looking to spin off AEG, its sports and entertainment subsidiary, was first reported by the Wall Street Journal last Tuesday. The company, which is headed by Denver billionaire Philip Anschutz, confirmed the rumors later that day.

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-- David Zahniser and Kate Linthicum at Los Angeles City Hall

Photo: Anschutz Entertainment Group President Tim Leiweke speaks to Los Angeles City Council members Monday morning. Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times

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