Donovan/Nobles referendum can’t stop the stadium

July 20, 2010

City Attorney Rusty Wells has analyzed the petition drive by Marty Donovan and Jack Nobles and has issued his opinion to the Mayor and Pensacola City Council. He has concluded the petition and any referendum will have no impact on the maritime park and the stadium. They will be built. (Read the letter)

1. The City was not a party to the contract, and the opportunity to approve or disapprove the contract was a qualified right that has now expired.

2. If the referendum passed it would unlawfully place the City in breach of contract of its many commitments to the bond purchasers and tax credit investors. The Series 2009 can’t be paid off immediately nor can they be paid off with the New Market Tax Credits without breaching the agreements and creating millions of dollars of liability to the bondholders and the tax credit investors, according to the bond counsel. (Bond counsel letter)

3. Florida Statutes prohibit a city charter and its referendum process from stopping the expenditure of the bonds for the purpose for which the funds were borrowed.

4. Florida Constitution prohibits the passing of laws retroactively impairing the obligation of contracts that were lawful. The referendum would retroactively impair the contractual obligations of the CMPA and its developer. Therefore, it is an unconstitutional act.

—- Will Donovan and Nobles be honest enough to share this letter with the voters? Will they put it up on their PAC website?

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  • William S.... July 21, 2010 at 11:29 am


    You and I disagree on basic national political matters and motives of the Executive Branch, however on this matter I could not agree more.

    It would be nice is we could vote Marty Donovan and his ilk out of Northwest Florida altogether as we voted him out of office. I have no fiscal “dog” in this fight nor am I a particular ally of supporters however as a sixth generation Pensacolean I think it would be wonderful if Mr. Donovan and Mr. Nobles could make a visible impact on economic development in this city as opposed to being myopic obstructionists…only an explitive or two would sufficiently describe my characterization of their lack of positive contribution to my community.

    I like the fact that our wonderful community is conservative but having lived all over the country and the world we are undeniably backwards to the nth degree because of people like Donovan, Fairchild and Nobles….I do not want my son’s to have to leave Pensacola as I did in order to acquire a marketable job skill and a competitive degree…..however I place the proximate cause of our lack of competitiveness on selfish ignoramouses like Donovan, Fairchild and Nobles!!!!! To these guys I can only say…REMEMBER THE ELECTION AND THE PARK VOTE STUPID!!!

  • Louise July 20, 2010 at 3:30 pm

    Do these people have no lives? I can’t say I exactly agree with the location of the Park; however, at least it would be doing something to hopefully offer some jobs and do some improvements to an otherwise thirdworld country looking area right in the downtown area. It sure doesn’t help the overall appearance of our town for our guests to have it look all trashed out and bug/rodent and snake invested.

    • Rick Outzen July 20, 2010 at 3:34 pm

      Any plan could be picked a part. Some people like the color blue, others green. It’s time we move on and build the darn thing. Fortunately, it looks like Jack and Marty didn’t do their homework.