As we noted yesterday, a number of the local gadflies and progressive politicos opposing the Angel Stadium agreement have suddenly discovered enthusiasm for Dr. Howard Knohl’s idea of a $700 million Anaheim Performing Arts Center on 12-acres of the current stadium site.
Not so long ago, Knohl’s idea was being used as a pinata by some of the same folks. A post on the Orange Juice Blog called it a “penny ante non-profit” and attacked the city’s exclusive negotiating agreement with APAC as a “blatant public land giveaway.
Last month, after the Anaheim City Council voted to sell the stadium site to an Arte Moreno-led partnership for $375 million, Knohl lashed out in this Facebook post:
Cynthia Ward, gadfly, political activist and aide to Councilmember Denise Barnes, commiserated with Knohl:
Little more than three years ago, in the aforementioned blog post, Ward attacked Knohl’s ENA with the city. She speculate it was somehow the work of former Mayor Curt Pringle:
“Why do I see Curt’s fingerprints all over something that should only have Knohl fingerprints on it? Am I that paranoid now? Something is NOT RIGHT about this, and the fight to push forward last night WITHOUT DELAY was too intense to be accidental.”
Ward also criticized it as a “gift of public land” and questioned getting rid of the Grove to make way for APAC:
“While claiming no cost to the General Fund, tearing down the Grove to make way for a performing arts center IS a cost to the GF, and the Grove is one of the few enterprise businesses the City runs that MAKES MONEY. Now we kiss that good-bye for a charitable project anticipated to LOSE money. Yet there is NO mention of that loss to the General Fund. What do we cut from the City’s budget to make up the millions lost from the Grove?”
At the same time, Ward said she would have been supportive if the performing arts center had incorporated into the most recenter Anaheim Convention Center and the cost rolled into the bonds that financed the expansion:
“Speaking of magical thinking, how was this not incorporated into the Convention Center expansion? Since the CC is already losing money we may as well get a community benefit from that loss. I would still have preferred we send the bonds to voters but I would have helped promote the bonds to those voters if we got a performing arts center built into the Convention Center.”
Dr. Knohl commented on that post:
To which Orange Juice Blog editor and council gadfly Vern Nelson replied:
Now that Kohl’s anger and resentment seems useful to opposing the Angels agreement, Nelson is singing a different tune – commenting on Knohl’s aforementioned Facebook post with an offer of support for the Anaheim Performing Arts Center:
Again, this is all about politics. These gadflies and Moreno allies don’t want Mayor Sidhu and the council majority to chalk up a win – even one that benefits Anaheim taxpayers and city coffers. They’re eyes are on the November council elections and electing a progressive-Left council majority controlled by Councilman Jose F. Moreno. And for the moment, Howard Knohl’s dream is of use political use to them.