University of Phoenix stadium (Source: CBS 5 News)
GLENDALE, AZ (CBS5) -
Arizona is on the clock.
The Super Bowl countdown is officially on to next year's big game in Glendale.
But hosting the Super Bowl may not be the financial windfall many expect.
When Arizona hosted the Super Bowl in 2008, it generated more than $550 million to the state economy.
However, Glendale Mayor Jerry Weiers told CBS5 that his city lost about $2 million during the Super Bowl from money spent to pay overtime costs for police officers, firefighters and emergency personnel.
Weiers said he expects the tab for next year's Super Bowl to go up even more.
"If we lost a couple million dollars last time and costs were lower - and we're expected to do more - we know our costs are going to be higher," said Weiers. "If we can't afford to put it on because of public safety, I can't go to my citizens and raise their property taxes or sales taxes that they haven't got. We're having a tough time right now just making ends meet with the current situation, let alone taking on these extra events."
The mayor said the city of Glendale could be hit with a $3.5 million loss by hosting next year's Super Bowl.
To make things worse, most 2015 Super Bowl events will be in other Valley cities, taking away even more revenue from Glendale.
State lawmaker David Gowan, R-Sierra Vista, may have the answer to Glendale's Super Bowl problem.
The House majority leader is proposing a bill that would reimburse Arizona cities up to $4 million for major events to help pay the added costs of public safety.
"What I want to do is just make sure that our population, our citizens are protected," said Gowan. "That's what this bill is for. That's absolutely what it's about."
Gowan said that since major events like the Super Bowl benefit the entire state, then taxpayers across the state should be able to offset some of the costs to keep the community safe.
Other major events like the NCAA college football championship, Final Four and national conventions would also benefit from Gowan's proposal.
Copyright 2014 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
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