The Meaning of Hahamongna

The original settlers of the region were sometimes called the Hahamongna Indians. The word means "Flowing Waters, Fruitful Valley" in the native Tongva language.

Hahamongna News

Title:

NFL bid hangs on Monday vote - Gordo, Little, Madison could swing deal

Subtitle:

Date:

2005-06-05

Author:

Gene Maddaus, Staff Writer

Publication:

Pasadena Star News

Content:

Saturday, June 04, 2005 - PASADENA -- Before he votes yes, Victor Gordo wants soccer fields.

Before he votes yes, Paul Little wants to see the final deal.

And before he votes no, Steve Madison wants to know what Plan B is.

The three council members have remained officially undecided heading into Monday's big vote on whether to pursue an NFL team for the Rose Bowl. A yes vote would keep Pasadena in the running as it vies with Anaheim and the Los Angeles Coliseum for an NFL franchise.

With three council members firmly opposed, any one of the three undecided council members could kill the deal. Each one, however, is thought to be prepared to vote in favor of the NFL proposal. They just want to know a few things first.

Gordo has been most up front, stating matter-of-factly at a City Council meeting two weeks ago that the city needs money to build soccer fields in the Hahamongna Watershed Area. Those fields have been incorporated into the city's recommendation for Monday's meeting. He also has asked for clarity on the potential fiscal upside for the Pasadena Unified School District.

Little has been less specific. He's interested in knowing what the city could do with funds from Brookside Golf Course that will no longer be needed to subsidize the Rose Bowl.

"There needs to be tangible improvements that people can see as a result of the NFL coming to the Rose Bowl other than the stadium being redone,' Little said. "There will be income. How much is it going to be What are we going to do with that?'

Little has said he would be "uncomfortable' voting in favor of a deal without substantive answers to those questions.

Madison has been hardest to read.

He has consistently emphasized the Rose Bowl's financial predicament the golf course subsidizes the stadium to the tune of about $2 million a year and stressed the need to consider all options to make the stadium more fiscally sound.

"What I'm interested in discussing on Monday night is the financial situation of the Rose Bowl,' Madison said recently. "Increasingly, people are focused on the financial issues.'

If the NFL does not come to the Rose Bowl, NFL supporters argue the city will have to finance a $120 million to $140 million renovation to save the stadium from obsolescence. NFL opponents say the figure is grossly inflated.

The financial issues represent the high ground for NFL supporters: they would rather discuss the stadium's negative cash flow than the potential effect of the NFL on traffic congestion and recreation.

Madison's focus on the bottom line suggests that he leans in favor of pursuing the deal. Though his line of reasoning parallels that of the most ardent NFL supporters, he has refrained from taking it to the final step concluding there are no viable alternatives and becoming an unabashed NFL booster.

Indeed, lately he has taken to saying, "If the vote were cast today, I'd vote no. I'm not persuaded the risks are worth incurring.'

Few NFL opponents find the statement to be genuine, and Madison has been unfazed by the assertions of NFL opponents including most prominently, Mayor Bill Bogaard that the financial straits of the Rose Bowl have been exaggerated.

Still, opponents of the NFL plan have flooded Madison with calls and e-mails urging him to vote no, hoping that his mind really isn't yet made up.

"Pasadena Heritage holds out hope that more council members will come to their senses,' said Sue Mossman, the preservation group's executive director.


Gene Maddaus can be reached at (626) 578-6300, Ext. 4444, or by e-mail at gene.maddaus@sgvn.com .