Some Arizona officials score free Super Bowl tickets
PHOENIX (AP) Tickets for the Super Bowl are in hot demand and running for several thousand dollars, but some Arizona elected officials are getting the perk of going for free or at face value.
The NFL, Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee and businesses have provided tickets to local lawmakers at a lower price than most people can get them. Face-value seat prices run from $800 to $1,900, but tickets are going for high as $10,000 on some sales websites.
Officials ranging from city council members to the governor will be at Sunday’s game in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale. Gov. Doug Ducey paid for his own ticket, spokesman Daniel Scarpinato told The Arizona Republic (http://bit.ly/1yFI8rN ).
The state got 20 tickets as part of a contract with the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee, and Ducey directed those tickets to a nonprofit that helps active military members and their families, Scarpinato said.
U.S. Sen. John McCain will also be in the stands for the Seattle Seahawks-New England Patriots matchup. The senator paid face value for his seat, spokesman Brian Rogers said.
Scottsdale Councilwoman Linda Milhaven will go for free and got a second ticket for face value thanks to an agreement between the suburban city and the Host Committee. The city gave more than $645,000 to the committee to help with Super Bowl festivities.
The committee offered 12 tickets that Scottsdale offered to council members so they could serve as city representatives at the event, city spokesman Kelly Corsette said.
Council members also could buy a second ticket at a face value ranging from $1,500 to $1,900. Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane and the rest of the council decided not to take part.
In Phoenix, City Councilwoman Kate Gallego and her husband, U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego, bought tickets at face value. Council spokesman David Urbinato said the NFL made the tickets available to the Gallegos, and no other council members planned to go, he said.
Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton said nobody offered him a ticket, but he does not feel snubbed.
”My job is not to go to a football game,” Stanton said. ”My job is to make sure my city does the very best job hosting this massively important event.”
Glendale Mayor Jerry Weiers is going to the game after receiving two free tickets Thursday from the CEO of a sporting goods company. Mitchell Modell of Modell’s Sporting Goods made the gesture after hearing Weiers had not been offered seats.
Arizona lawmakers have been criticized in the past for accepting freebies, including free tickets to sporting events. The disclosure of such perks became a bigger issue after a Fiesta Bowl scandal in 2010 exposed the lavish spending and perks that the college football bowl heaped on lawmakers and employees.
Information from: The Arizona Republic, http://www.azcentral.com