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Filner: Tourism agreement not a done deal

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - After accepting an amended operating agreement with the city's Tourism Marketing District, Mayor Bob Filner now says the deal is far from over.

The agreement on how to spend millions of dollars in marketing funds came after much debate.

That agreement is only two pages long, but it took several months to get here. So with this, many people thought the deal would go through.

But Sunday, the mayor tells News 8, he still has some major concerns.

"They have not given us a very strong proposal to protect the city against losses, and until they do, I'm not ready to accept this agreement," said Filner.

That statement from San Diego Mayor Bob Filner comes just 10 days after the council voted unanimously to accept this amended operating agreement with the city's tourism district.

The agreement came after months of bickering, including a showdown in court over a lawsuit the district filed against Filner.

The judge sided with the mayor, ruling the council should get involved.

During a meeting less than two weeks ago, a deal was reached based on proposed concessions made by the hotel industry.

Some, include posting meeting agendas and providing performance reviews of groups that get public funds.

In exchange, funds which total about $30 million a year and are generated through a two percent hotel room charge, could be used as they have been in the past to promote San Diego as a tourist destination.

The sticking point for Filner:

"I wanted these hotels and motels that are you know, getting benefits from this to what they call indemnify or protect the city against any losses," he said.

Until they do, Filner says he won't accept the deal.

That means the district's $5.4 million advertising campaign is on hold, something officials there say has already had a negative impact on the industry.

"Immeasurably...and it's already...that's already done," Filner said.

So what happens now?

The City Attorney's Office is supposed to bring an appropriate resolution back to the council later this month.

So there is still time to negotiate.

But again, the tourism is here and the district is waiting for an answer. 

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