Emanuel says he told Ricketts: Wrigley financing plan a 'non-starter'

March 30, 2011

Download Story
(WBEZ/file)
Emanuel deems the Cubs' plan to renovate Wrigley Field with tax dollars a "non-starter."

Mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel said he told the owner of the Chicago Cubs that a plan to fix up Wrigley Field using tax dollars is a "non-starter."

Emanuel met recently with Cubs owner Tom Ricketts. The mayor-elect described it as a "short...informational" meeting. And in it, he told Ricketts he did not support the team's proposal to partly use tax revenue from Cubs tickets to finance a renovation of Wrigley Field.

"I let them know that if all we did was repackage old ideas, that was a non-starter," Emanuel said at an unrelated press conference on Tuesday morning.

Emanuel said he knows work needs to be done to save the nearly century-old park, though he is offering no ideas on how to pay for it.  That is the responsibility of the Cubs, he said.

"They have to come up with a proposal that works, both for them as well as for the public," the mayor-elect said.

Emanuel is not alone in rejecting the Cubs' earlier Wrigley Field plan. Neither current Mayor Richard Daley nor Illinois Governor Pat Quinn supported it.

Asked to comment on Emanuel's statement, a spokesman for the Ricketts family said they "continue to work to develop consensus among all the parties involved."