JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Mayor Alvin Brown is denying there's any dispute between his office and Jaguars owner, Shad Khan. He says they spoke twice yesterday.
"I addressed his concerns," said Mayor Brown. "And wanted to make sure he knew that we're going to move forward, and make sure we don't have a misunderstanding."
That misunderstanding centers around a letter sent to Khan from the Mayor's General Counsel, Cindy Laquidara. The letter basically said the Jaguars had violated its lease agreement, and that termination was possible.
Khan fired back, saying he was, "shocked and perplexed." He was quick to point out his financial contributions to Jacksonville. He spent $800 million on the team. Another $3 million of his own money to build a new locker room. And yet another million dollars in philanthropy.
The issue involved the selection of the company which manages the stadium. The picking process changed, apparently without Laquidara's knowledge. She has since apologized for what's being called a major communication error.
And Mayor Brown won't say for sure if she'll face any consequences, for possibly jeopardizing arguably the most important relationship in the city. He said, "Well clearly, I'm going to look at the process. Make sure we look at the process. Make sure it doesn't happen again."
Mayor Brown went on to call himself the Jaguars' biggest fan. He said, "It's a misunderstanding. There's no dispute with the Jaguars. And at the end of the day, we're going to be on the right side the the Jaguars. Do everything I can to support the Jaguars."
Action News requested an interview with Mr. Khan. Our calls were not returned.
The full text of the mayors letter from Thursday is below:
Dear Fellow Jaguars Fans:
Reports in the news media yesterday suggested that the City of Jacksonville and the Jacksonville Jaguars are in a dispute. That is not the case.
We fully support our Jaguars. The Jaguars are an important part of the fabric that makes up our great city.
Yesterday, I spoke by telephone with Jaguars owner Shad Khan. We will work closely together to move the City and the team to the next level of success. Mr. Khan and I will continue to talk and meet regularly so that we can make sure that the City and the Jaguars are always on the same page when it comes to making our community a better place. We are very fortunate to have Mr. Khan as the team owner. I am excited about his plans for the team and his desire to help our city. The City wants the team to enjoy huge success, since the team’s success will help to power Jacksonville’s success. The Jaguars are our team!
With Jaguars training camp starting in July, it is time to start getting excited about the 2012-2013 NFL season. As we approach the first home pre-season game on August 10, the City of Jacksonville will do its part to be a great teammate with Mr. Khan, Coach Mike Mularkey, and the entire Jaguars organization.