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Letters: A brighter future for the Coliseum

May 17, 2012

Re "Panel OKs Coliseum lease deal," May 15

L.A. City Councilman Bernard C. Parks complains that the public has spent money on Coliseum upkeep since 1923, implying that turning it over to USC gets these government agencies no return.

UCLA shared the Coliseum's occupancy for much of those 89 years. In 1982, the commission essentially contracted away all important management and scheduling issues to the brand-new Los Angeles Raiders. We had played with pro teams before, but the commission gave the Raiders the last word on all important issues.

UCLA Chancellor Charles Young's and USC President James Zumberge's complaints to the commission were summarily dismissed. UCLA decamped for the Rose Bowl, but USC was stuck and continues to suffer the fate of any organization subject to the jurisdiction of a squabbling joint government agency.

USC — the neighbor, principal user and most symbolic tenant of the Coliseum — will do a much, much better job running the stadium.

Alan Charles

Beverly Hills

The writer is a retired UCLA vice chancellor.

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