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Six Flags stock opened the day at $1.75 per share, matching its lowest opening price in at least 10 years. This after the stock set record closing lows in each of the previous two days of trading.
The stock continued its slide despite last week’s fourth quarter financial report, which claimed a 7 percent revenue increase over the same period in 2006.
The company’s goodwill seems to be flagging, also. Michael Palazzi, a business owner in Agawam, Mass., home of Six Flags New England, has asked the city to repay him $54,000, the amount of money he estimates he lost when the town council passed a parking ban pushed by the local theme park.
Last year, the town council passed a parking ordinance which prohibited Six Flags visitors from parking anywhere but at the lots owned by Six Flags, which cost $15-$30 per car. The measure was pushed by Six Flags in the name of public safety, though there was no record of any pedestrian safety incident involving the unsanctioned satellite lots in the past 20 years.
Palazzi, who has a storage facility down the street from the Six Flags entrance, was among the locals who offered a cheaper alternative, at $10 per car, before the ordinance knocked him out of the car parking business.
The ordinance was tossed out shortly after Agawam citizens and lawmakers learned that Dan Snyder, who became chairman of the Six Flags board in late 2005, had used the exact same safety rationale in 2000 in Prince George’s County to prohibit pedestrian traffic to his FedExField on Redskins game days.
The PG measure was tossed in 2004 after a lawsuit was filed claiming that the safety argument was bogus, and that the measure was actually intended just to force fans to pay Snyder’s inflated parking fees.
Mayor Cohen, a four-term incumbent, was bounced out of office in November by Susan Dawson, a substitute teacher and political neophyte, in a campaign that centered on the parking situation.
Dawson’s campaign was managed by Palazzi. He jumped into politics for the first time to fight Six Flags’ influence on his hometown.
Last week, Palazzi threatened to sue the city if he is not paid the money he lost as a result of the ban.
Keep the dial right here for all the breaking news in Snyder’s Six Flags soap opera.