The seasoned local business leaders picked by the mayor to analyze plans for a downtown NFL stadium on the public's behalf seem to have one thing in common: deep financial, political and civic ties with the company promoting the venue.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa' s panel includes a former governor who received generous donations from entities connected to the owner of Anschutz Entertainment Group; entertainment executives that have partnered with the firm or its affiliates; and business owners who have served alongside company president and CEO Tim Leiweke on local civic boards and commissions.

That makeup could cast doubt on its ability to objectively evaluate the stadium project that may involve financial risk for the cash-strapped city.

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