PHOENIX (KSAZ) - A lawsuit is aiming to reveal details surrounding a potential renovation project at the Talking Stick Resort Arena.
"We're hoping to get an order from the court saying they have to produce the records, so the public can view," said attorney Alexander Kolodin.
Officials with the Goldwater Institute say the City of Phoenix is withholding important information from the public.
"This one's unusual, because when we asked for public records from the city, they said they signed a private agreement with a private company," said John Riches with the Goldwater Institute. "The government can't contract the public's right to know."
While it is known there have been discussions on renovations to the Downtown Phoenix arena, little else is known, including the cost of the endeavor, how much taxpayer money is involved, and what is going to be done to the arena.
"We don't know because the city won't tell us, and this is a fundamental question of open and transparent government, the public's business should be open for public scrutiny and when it does involve extensive taxpayer resources, taxpayers have a right to know what that deal is going to look like," said Riches.
The city, meanwhile, has released a statement to FOX 10 that reads, in part:
The Suns have shared confidential documents with the city that describe the conceptual scope of proposed renovations and cost estimates. At least for now, disclosing these documents could prevent the city from receiving the best price for the work outlined in those documents.
The statement goes on to say:
Generally, state law protects the procurement and negotiation process of public works projects, like renovations of the city-owned TSRA (Talking Stick Resort Arena) against public records requests until a final contract has been awarded.
City of Phoenix officials say when negotiations are over, everything will be made public. There is no timetable on when that will be.