NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sat down with NFL.com's Steve Wyche yesterday, discussing several topics around the NFL. One of those topics was the recent failure of the Miami Dolphins' public funding request to renovate Sun Life Stadium.
"We do want to see the Dolphins stay in Miami," Goodell told Wyche, according to NFL.com. "We want to see them stay in a facility that will allow them to compete, and to bring in other big events, including Super Bowls. And that takes work, it takes investment, and Steve Ross was doing the investing and was really the guy who was putting his heart and soul into this and his passion into this. And that's what's frustrating is that it didn't get a chance to get to the voters."
The bill, which never reached the floor of the State House of Representatives despite easily passing in the Senate, would have given the citizens of Miami-Dade County the ability to vote on the use of public money. However, despite the referendum having already opened to earl voting, with some 40,000 votes already cast, the Speaker of the House, Will Weatherford, never called the bill to the House floor.
Speaking about the deal, which he described as "very intelligent and thoughtful," not receiving a vote. "I was there on the day that the Senate passed the (bill) 35 to 4, and we met with members of the House. I think the frustration is it never had the opportunity to go to the voters. This was targeted for a referendum, I believe, yesterday, or next week, excuse me. I think the voters deserved the opportunity to evaluate the proposal, and make the kinds of changes that Steve Ross and the county and city officials had proposed. We think that would be good for the community, we think it would be good for the stadium and we think it would be good for the team."
Goodell also pledged to continue to work with the community and the team to figure out what to do next. "I was involved. I went down to Tallahassee myself before the legislative session ended. Of course we will stay involved. We will do whatever is necessary, because we do think it's right for all of Florida. We think it's particularly good for the Miami-Dade area. It will help attract bigger events, and that will have a real economic impact on the community."