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Business Losses Feared : Strike Will Affect Many Off the Field

September 23, 1987|MARK LANDSBAUM and DAVID REYES | Staff Writers

The City of Anaheim will lose $340,000 in revenue for each game not played at Anaheim Stadium because of the NFL players' strike--about as much as it costs to pay five good quarterbacks for one week's work.

Add to that the plight of more than 600 part-time concessionaires who won't report to work at the stadium on Sunday because the Rams-Bengals game has been canceled.

Similarly, 55 Anaheim police officers won't work their normal five hours of overtime Sunday because of the canceled game. And of course, they won't collect their estimated $27.50 per hour overtime pay.

The NFL players' strike, announced early Tuesday, already has resulted in team owners canceling this weekend's scheduled games. However, owners say they intend to resume league play on Oct. 4 using non-union players. Whether the non-union games will continue and for how long is unknown.

For the Record
Los Angeles Times Thursday September 24, 1987 Orange County Edition Metro Part 2 Page 2 Column 5 Metro Desk 2 inches; 56 words Type of Material: Correction
A photo caption Wednesday in The Times indicated that a sign outside the Catch restaurant in Anaheim was addressed to California Angels owner Gene Autry and Los Angeles Rams owner Georgia Frontiere. In fact, said Gary Parkinson, general manager of the Catch, the sign's message was directed to Frontiere and Gene Upshaw, the chief negotiator for the striking National Football League Players' Assn.

But for every week games are canceled, there will be economic effects beyond players' salaries and teams' profits.

Just how much the economic pinch will hurt seems to depend on who is being pinched.

"Most of those officers will probably welcome the break," Police Capt. Martin Mitchell said. "Most have to be ordered to do it (work overtime). There is so much overtime . . . we just don't have that many who volunteer."

The Anaheim Stadium workers are primarily teen-agers, senior citizens or others with full-time jobs who supplement their income selling peanuts and pennants, said Bill Turner, general manager for the city-owned and -operated stadium.

"They are typically people who don't rely on this income as their No. 1 income," he said. "They are the ushers, the parking lot attendants, cashiers and food service personnel."

But one of those part-timers, Kerri Hardin, 19, said a lengthy strike cutting off income from her job managing a stadium ice cream parlor would prevent her from giving Christmas presents to her younger brothers.

The Cal State Fullerton student, who takes home about $50 from each Rams and California Angels baseball game she works, has missed several games this year because of conflicting duties representing her home town as Miss Diamond Bar. A strike might make it difficult for her to come up with tuition money, about $500 a semester, and car payments, she said.

'Definitely Hurt'

And Christy Gullikson, a 16-year-old Garden Grove High School junior who works on commission selling popcorn, pretzels and candy, said Tuesday that the strike "will definitely hurt me.

"I'm a student and this is my only job and I'm saving the money for a car and also for college expenses," she said. "So I hope it doesn't come to the point where I have to look for something else."

George Kantar, a lobby director who was taking tickets for Tuesday night's Angels game, has worked at the stadium since 1979.

"Right now we don't know if we would work if they gather a team (of non-union players) to play," said Kantar, a part-time employee who also works for the Los Angeles city attorney's office as a legal assistant. "But one way or the other, I'm not going to be hurt that much by the strike. I'm mainly out here because I enjoy it."

But beyond the stadium's walls, the second NFL players' strike in five years is expected to send ripples, not waves, through the local economy.

"There are not a lot of hotel rooms filled, for example, due to Rams games," said Sheri Erlewine, public information officer for the City of Anaheim. "We do get some visitors from the visiting team's area, but not enough to be a significant impact."

$5 to $190 for Parking

Some businesses along State College Boulevard rent spaces in their parking lots to football fans who don't want to fight the congestion of the stadium lot, she said. But at $5 to $10 per car and only "a few hundred" spaces available, it isn't a major enterprise.

For other businesses, the pinch will be felt a little more sharply.

Gary Parkinson, general manager of the Catch restaurant and bar across the street from the stadium on State College Boulevard, estimates a $25,000 loss in business with each canceled game.

About 1,000 customers patronize the restaurant and bar before the game and another 1,000 after, Parkinson said.

"We haven't estimated what the fall-off is going to be . . . but it will probably be dramatic," he said.

The decline in business will also have a significant effect on his staff, he said. The Catch employs 50 to 60 workers on a routine Sunday game day. But this week, Parkinson said, he will probably have only eight to 10 people rather than the full complement for Sunday brunch.

"If the strike lasts all season, there will be people without a job," Parkinson said.

"Most of the fans I've talked to say they are not going to see the B-teams play," he said of the substitute teams of non-union players. "There's a lot of quality entertainment and other attractions, and they don't need minor league football."

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