ROCK HILL, S.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) – After a week of standing by a written statement, Rock Hill mayor, John Gettys shed more light on the Carolina Panthers practice facility project.

“Any implication by the Panthers that the city did not do the absolute and professional best is simply not true,” said Gettys. “Facts are stubborn things. Say that one more time, facts are stubborn things.”

The facts laid out by city administration in front of the council according to Rock Hill city manager, David Vehaun, is since the negotiations started with the Panthers in 2019, there has been a request for the city to issue bonds and backstop the project.

The city several times has said they would not do that to protect the taxpayers and the city’s credit rating. In 2021, Rock Hill agreed to forgo 100% of tax dollars on the project. This is in addition to York county and the school district including tax money in the agreement as well. After breaking down the negotiations for the last two years.

Vehaun said the city was ready to hold up their end of the bargain.

“We were honestly probably two weeks away from issuing the debt when we found out the Panthers asked us to stop,” added Vehaun. “Indicated they wanted to try additional things to get the debt issued, which is their prerogative and that’s fine.”