And the CCI soap opera goes on


What would we do in the SDCC off-season without lawsuits, municipal battles and feisty debates to tide us over? It's only been just over a month since San Diego Comic-Con bid us farewell, but the snide and contentious debates over its future - and finances - continue. Let's examine.

There's the petition to stop Dean Spano's Measure C for a fancy new stadium. I love how people say "Comic-Con is against it!" to bolster any argument in San Diego, as if CCI is itself a city superhero whose opinions carry moral authority. In fact, the counter argument - which says the proposed "convadium" is a great idea - also quotes CCI as saying they won't leave San Diego if it happens.

Then there's Measure D (you can suss out the difference between the 2 measures here but neither is for a contiguous expansion) authored by the indefatigable attorney Cory Briggs. You know Mr. Briggs, he's been the thorn in our convention center expansion side since the beginning. Now he's come up with the ominous-sounding "Citizens' Plan" as a way of "making sure the rules of the game are fair."

Alas, a city councilman disagrees, calling the measure "poorly written and misguided" and a "recipe for disaster" that could force SDCC to leave town. (The essay doesn't name Briggs, other than to mention "a lawyer who makes his living suing taxpayers" but it apparently drew blood as Briggs left a salty rebuttal in the comments.)  And again, CCI's opinion was held up as the voice of reason: "Comic-Con has stated in the past, and continues to believe, a contiguous, expanded convention center is one that will benefit the city best. It appears this ballot initiative does not favor that scenario."

We know.

The Haus That CCI Built

But the convention center expansion isn't the only CCI news these days. That would be - I can't even type this without laughing - "Barriohaus LLC" which is NOT a Mexican-German fusion restaurant as you might think. It's owned by CCI and it bought 2 office buildings and a warehouse for 6.3 million dollars in April 2015. Good thing CCI didn't waste any extra cash by mailing all badges directly to their attendees!

Strangely, this purchase was not announced on the Toucan blog, but was instead revealed through their recent audit. If you want to delve into all the details of the tax filings and rules for non-profits, there's quite a bit of cynical subtext in this article. Like snidely mentioning that president John Rogers' salary jumped from 64K in 2014 to 208K last year. But hey, that's not what we care about, right? We're wondering...

  • Is the new 32,000 square feet of space going to be used for the Comic-Con museum?
  • Will it relate to Comic-Con HQ?
  • Is SDCC more invested - beyond the literal - in San Diego now?
  • Will we devoted attendees be invited to the hauswarming party?

Life as an SDCC loyalist: there's always something to spectate. If you're local, you know all about this - but even if you're not, these debates could affect your Comic-Con future. More will be revealed, I'm sure.


  1. Thanks for picking this up. There are multiple scenarios that can be read into the context of these purchases, but until either SDCCI has a grand unveiling or there is an insider leak, we may never know. Keep up the good work!


    1. "Grand unveiling" vs. "insider leak" - equally unlikely and equally awesome.