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Vote on Cardinals Stadium Is Off

August 14, 1998

MESA, Ariz. (AP) _ A planned public vote on a proposed new home for the Arizona Cardinals is off, team and city officials announced Thursday.

Voters in Mesa, Gilbert and Queen Creek were expected to vote on the proposed project in November. But members of a committee charged with deciding how to pay for the $1.1 billion Rio Salado Crossing project decided they need more time, city spokeswoman Andrea Raiser said.

The six-member committee had until Aug. 20 to figure out the final costs of the project and how to pay for it. The panel was formed in late July and included representatives from each of the three cities.

Cardinals vice president Michael Bidwell said the team and the stadium district formed by the three cities couldn’t agree on two issues: how to handle overhead and maintenance costs, and how much of the project could be funded by selling bonds.

The Cardinals thought bonds could pay for more of the project than the city did.

Mesa Mayor Wayne Brown said in a statement that the district is still committed to the project, but added the decision was too important to rush. He did not immediately return calls for comment Thursday.

Rio Salado Crossing is planned for northwest Mesa, but Gilbert and Queen Creek joined because Mesa needs at least one partner to take advantage of a state law that helps fund development. The project is to include not only a new Cardinals stadium, but also a new convention center, two 18-hole golf courses, retail and office space and new homes.

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