The team's ballot measure failed, 57% to 43%, after all city precincts were counted, according to unofficial results released early Wednesday by the Registrar of Voters in San Diego County. Nearly 169,000 residents voted against it, and 127,000 voted for it, with provisional ballots still to be counted.
Under current California law, the measure needed two-thirds of voters to approve it because it's a tax hike for a specific purpose.
Team owner Dean Spanos now has until Jan. 15 to make a decision: Should he move the franchise to Los Angeles to share a lucrative new stadium with the Los Angeles Rams?
Or should he try for another stadium solution in San Diego even though there's no clear or certain path to get one? The Chargers have played in San Diego since 1961.
"In terms of what comes next for the Chargers, it's just too early to give you an answer," Spanos said in a letter to fans released early Wednesday. "We are going to diligently explore and weigh our options, and do what is needed to maintain our options, but no decision will be announced until after the football season concludes and no decision will be made in haste."