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San Diego stadium initiative has makings of longer waiting game for Raiders

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Where the Raiders call home in the future could depend greatly on where the Chargers end up. That decision is looking headed for a long delay.

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San Diego and the Chargers are actively working on putting together a plan to keep the Chargers in town. That was the hope of Roger Goodell and the NFL when they gave the Chargers the option to join the Rams in Los Angeles or delay their relocation plans.

At the outset, the details of the Chargers' potential stadium sharing with the Rams had one deadline - January of 2017. Should the Chargers not have a deal in place to build a stadium in San Diego by that point, they can make the jump to LA. But as it is for most deadlines, it isn't really a deadline. There is a caveat that could push the deadline out another year, leaving the Raiders and their fans hanging for another year as to the fate of the team.

The caveat states that if the Chargers have an initiative in the works that has yet to be approved, they can push the deadline out another year. And the way things are shaking out, that's looking more and more like the eventual outcome.

Said Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union Tribune:

Brace for this: In November, as much as 66.5 percent of the electorate could approve a tourism tax hike to fund a stadium and convention center annex, and yet neither side could know whether they should make a toast or if their effort is toast.

It's a good thing the NFL gave the Chargers until 2018 to decide whether to take that option in Inglewood. It appears to be a very real possibility that they'll need the extra time to rule out a move.

Acee notes that current approval for public funding on a Chargers stadium sits at around 30% and raising that to a simple majority can be accomplished by November when the expected initiative hits the ballot. But in order to keep the initiative from heading for the Supreme Court via appeals is a 2/3 vote (66.6%), which would be much harder to accomplish.

It appears to take the state Supreme Court in the range of 22 months to decide the average case before it. Based on the indignation expressed after the appellate court's ruling, it is safe to assume an appeal of CCC v. Upland, which the Supreme Court could decide by this summer whether to consider.

In the meantime, San Diego's citizenry will make its decisions about the merits of helping the Chargers build a stadium.

For all the loud opposition in these parts to tax increases, it is conceivable that sentiment could carry the vote, similar to what happened in 1998 with Proposition C to build Petco Park. That measure passed with nearly 60 percent approval, far more than the majority required.

Nice for San Diego and the Chargers that at least things are moving in the right direction. There has been no movement from Oakland leaving the Raiders once again in a holding pattern. LA is their number one relocation destination, and they won't make any moves elsewhere so long as it's still an option. Until the Chargers officially have a home (or the Raiders officially stay in Oakland), the Raiders' permanent home will remain up in the air.