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GUEST OPINION: Demise of Redevelopment Agency is a big loss for Santa Rosa

Kathy Millison

By KATHLEEN MILLISON and DAVID GOUIN
Kathleen Millison is Santa Rosa city manager. David Gouin is director of economic development and housing for Santa Rosa.

Many in our community have expressed support for jobs and economic sustainability, in-fill development rather than sprawl, affordable workforce housing, environmental cleanup of brownfield sites and infrastructure upgrades for our roads, bike paths and parks.

Yet many of these same people are ambivalent about redevelopment and may not fully understand the impact to Santa Rosa’s quality of life with the pending Feb. 1 elimination of Santa Rosa’s Redevelopment Agency.

David Gouin

If you haven’t been following the story, the state Supreme Court on Dec. 29 upheld Assembly Bill 1X26, affirming the state Legislature’s decision to eliminate redevelopment. But the court did not uphold the companion bill to allow redevelopment agencies to continue to exist so long as they made hefty payments of local property taxes to the state. Now our local property tax is being swept away to address the state budget shortfall.

What does this mean to Santa Rosa?

Jobs and economic sustainability: It means a loss of more than 2,800 construction jobs and more than $84 million in investment in Santa Rosa projects, programs and services.

In-fill development: Without a focus on in-fill development, the Prince Memorial Greenway and Hyatt Vineyard Creek would not have been realized. Planned projects adjacent to the future SMART rail stations will not move forward.

Affordable housing: Four developments, totalling 285 homes for the area’s workforce, will not be constructed.

Brownfield cleanup: The Hyatt Vineyard Creek, New Railroad Square and Airfield Park cleanup would not have been possible.

Infrastructure: The Hearn Avenue overcrossing, portions of Stony Point Road widening, the Coddingtown Transit Hub and improvements near the Railroad Square SMART station will not move forward.

Don’t these local redevelopment efforts align with the main goals of creating jobs and supplying affordable housing in our state?

If you agree, then please don’t let these community programs, projects and services end with the total dissolution of redevelopment. Join the city now in contacting our local legislators.

You can contact state Sen. Noreen Evans, D-Santa Rosa, and state Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, via the state Senate website, www.senate.ca.gov/senators.

Our local Assembly members are Michael Allen, D-Santa Rosa; Wesley Chesbro, D-Arcata; and Jared Huffman, D-San Rafael. They can be contacted through the Assembly website, www.assembly.ca.gov/assemblymembers.

Urge them to support Senate Bill 659 by state Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Los Angeles. SB 659 would temporarily postpone the Feb. 1 dissolution deadline and allow critical time to have a reasoned discussion to develop a new job creation and economic development program for Santa Rosa and California.





44 Responses to “GUEST OPINION: Demise of Redevelopment Agency is a big loss for Santa Rosa”

  1. Just Me says:

    I would much rather see the money go to fixing our roads than fixing the buildings that they steal from private owners.

    Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  2. Commonsense says:

    @LBR,
    That was my point exactly, they have are supposed to have only that one “pool” of funds for (tax increment) to pay off the bonds and for any other “investments” (this is according to RDA’s own set of regulations/laws). That should be a pretty defined set of funds, but that’s not how they’ve operated.
    And I guess I define community slightly different. I don’t limit it to a an area, like the Roseland Shopping Center and the Canal Area, I define the Community as an entire city or county in which that area is located. And everyone who is affected by it. I will not be shedding any tears over the demise of RDA’s but appreciate the debate.

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  3. Social Dis-Ease says:

    Oops, got it wrong: SRNC not SRNA.
    SantaRosaNeighborhoodCoalition.com

    Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  4. Social Dis-Ease says:

    To Billy C.:
    I could frame that post.

    THAT is what the Santa Rosa Neighborhood Association has been contesting all these years.
    THEN after ‘downzoning’ you, making you ‘non-conforming’, they have the nerve, the gall to call your area an ‘opportunity area’ on the City’s web site.
    Which is code to developer insiders that if you bring them a ‘Smart Growth’ project they like-they’ll ‘make it happen’.
    Well, now that redevelopment is dead, and therefore eminent domain, they’ll have to use other softkill methods to have their way with your American Dream.

    You have been financially damaged by this molestation of your Property Rights, and so have your neighbors.

    YOU PAY THEM TO SCREW YOU!

    If that isn’t enough to get you involved with your neighbors and SRNA, I don’t know what is.

    This is the kind of thing that gets me off the couch.

    I know it sounds crazy, but…
    THEY WORK FOR YOU!

    Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  5. Steveguy says:

    @SMC– Very well said, but I think that Healdsburg was starting to drink the kool-aid recently.

    There was fairly recent built in-fill project in Santa Rosa if I remember right ( if ) it’s called the Brown something and went bankrupt.

    The Hyatt project was bankrupt more than once I think. ( again, the memory thing )

    I do know that they forced out long time businesses for the Hyatt project. And we have a creepy bike path named after the musician Prince it seems to me.

    Windsor Town Green– failing. Those type things out Sebastopol Road– failing.

    They want to build more of the same.

    Oh my

    Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

  6. SMC says:

    Hate to start on a personal note but Gouin is a hack, afraid of his own shadow and entirely unable/unwilling to step outside of Santa Rosa’s political leadership. Ideally, his job would actually be given to a staffer not beat down by SR politics, someone with a vision, someone who is a leader. So little good has been done on Gouin’s watch. SR might be the only city its size in CA that has failed to do a single, in-fill housing development in its Downtown during the last housing boom. This speaks to an utter lack of leadership, political of course but technical too. Claims of four, unbuilt housing developments with 285 houses means that a few sprawling deals in Southwest and an utterly curious senior housing project in Rincon Valley won’t get built. Fewer, entirely car-dependent houses – I’d consider this outcome more a victory for Santa Rosa.

    Our RDA’s involvement in making happen the urban abomination known as the Santa Rosa Mall is reason enough for the office to be defunded and disbanded. The eventual unwinding of the mall mess will cost tens of millions on top of the many millions initially invested.

    The Mall is an old story of course. That Gouin & Millison build their argument on the “success” of the Hyatt Vineyard Creek is a more current reason to celebrate the RDA’s demise and to call for a change in leadership in the City’s economic development office. That a poorly conceived, terribly organized building in the middle of a parking sea, across a scary, four-lane street has somehow encouraged vibrancy in Railroad Square is an utterly absurd argument. Sure, there must be some collateral benefits to RR Square by the very fact of Hyatt’s dreariness; any guest with the least imagination would want to flee that place at the first opportunity. Their argument aside, we need only compare the Vineyard Creek project to the Healdsburg Hotel, that town’s equivalent redevelopment outcome, to fully understand the bankrupt leadership and complete lack of vision possessed by Santa Rosa’s redevelopment team.

    Gouin’s current trick is perhaps the RDA’s last gasp, the ATT building. Recently granted yet another extension, this project will add to the Santa Rosa market more housing and more office space at the very moment Santa Rosa’s office and housing markets are in a state of depression. Putting aside the question about the actual viability of the project as currently conceived, there can be no doubt that even a wildly successful ATT will have little benefit to the greater Downtown.

    RDA’s can be brilliant tools in the hands of the right team – witness the Healdsburg Hotel. We in Santa Rosa have arguably never had that team and the current example needs to be shown the door. Too bad Gov Brown’s initiative does not have a slightly longer reach.

    Thumb up 6 Thumb down 4

  7. RICHARD says:

    The following question was sent to the City of Santa Rosa:

    FROM REDEVELOPMENT AGENCY REPORT:
    “REDEVELOPMENT 2011
    REVENUE…………….$ 8 MILLION
    EXPENSES…………. 16 MILLION
    NET………………….. -8 MILLION
    NET ASSETS……… -13 MILLION”

    Please explain what this means: ” NET ASSETS $ -13 MILLION “. What is a negative asset, what dat ?

    HEY HEY HO HO REDEVELOPMENT MUST GO !

    Thumb up 10 Thumb down 2

  8. Billy C says:

    @Kay
    I very similar thing happen to me. I was told some one that my property was rezoned from Industrial to high density residential making it next to worthless. When asking the City if this was true the said yes it was for the greater good and they had already drawn plans for its new use . I recently bought the property for 1.1 million and did major improvements. When I asked them why they did not ask me if a wanted to give up my property or at least tell me they where making the changes they ( advanced planning) said that they where not legally required to do so. I am sure the ADC, SMART, and the SCBC thinks this a great victory but A city can not kill of its business and expect to thrive. http://www.icleiusa.org/blog/archive/2011/08/26/Sonoma-County-Recognized-as-National-Leader-on-Climate-Action

    Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  9. Kay Tokerud says:

    If only redevelopment was just “infighting between government agencies” but it’s not. Not only do they scrape off most of the property increases in the so-called blighted area for 45 years, they also dictate land use in the area. If they don’t take your property by eminent domain, they can cause you to lose your use of your property by changing your land use designation via the General Plan, Area Plan, or zoning. Property owners are often denied any use of their property and are merely “landbanking” the property until a developer comes along that will acquire the property with the help of the Redevelopment Agency.

    Whenever you see vacant and underutilized commercial property, don’t assume that no one is willing to use that property. Most of the time those property owners have lost their use. Did you know that after they re-zone you, if you have a six month lapse in the current use they will not allow another tenant to use the property with the same use?

    The idea of redevelopment is far better than what actually happens. Essentially, property owners in redevelopment areas have no say in what their property is ultimately used for. If our cities would stop handcuffing our hardworking business and property owners with abusive land use regulations then we would have a chance to get out of this recession. Set our small business owners free!

    Thumb up 10 Thumb down 2

  10. Kay Tokerud says:

    The Roseland Shopping Center land was rezoned as part of the visioning plan of the Sebastopol Road Corridor plan. That plan made it impossible for anyone to re-occupy the grocery store among other things. The plan showed a new street that literally ran through at least one building’s footprint. The street isn’t even necessary. They did this to make sure that the center could not be used until the center was redeveloped according to the new vision. The property owners were completely screwed for years. The owners ended up waiting for the redevelopment agency to acquire the land to build “their vision”.

    This was the typical one-two punch of redevelopment. First, the re-zoning that makes a property useless and then acquiring it for a reduced price. A number of property owners were similarly screwed over there. I was present at the last City council meeting that finalized the Vision plan and several property owmers were there indicating that they had just learned about it. Again, it’s typical for the city to not adequately notice affected property owners so that they are among the last to know. For them, it’s business as usual.

    Thumb up 15 Thumb down 3

  11. RICHARD says:

    SANTA ROSA REDEVELOPMENT
    Net Tax Increment Requirements
    GATEWAYS……………… $ 612,953,760
    SANTA ROSA CENTER…. 54,592,585
    S W SANTA ROSA……….. 369,595.365
    TRANSIT ORIENTED…… 83,977,655

    TOTAL……………………… $ 1,121,119,365

    $ 1.2 billion dollars is a lot of diverted taxes !

    HEY HEY HO HO REDEVELOPMENT MUST GO !

    Thumb up 13 Thumb down 3

  12. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @Steveguy – what does that have to do with local groups? And what is this comment about Safeway? They are all over town, and I searched back 3 years in the PD and didn’t see any articles about Safeway having any trouble expanding. If Santa Rosa truly is good with working with Hispanic businesses (which I have never heard), than I say that is a good thing.

    Thumb up 2 Thumb down 5

  13. From the Street says:

    The communal government gravy train is over and good riddance. Where was the Santa Rosa City Council concern for a redevelopment project for downtown?

    The City Council abandon downtown years ago and never looked back. What is left are some second rate restaurants, pawn shop, and closed or closing stores and businesses. The unemployed and the young with nothing better to do hang out and the whole area has needed a face lift and new direction for years.

    Mr. Mayor and Council where was that redevelopment?

    Santa Rosa misused redevelopment for years just as many other cities did in California and now because the state is bankrupt, there is a change in direction.

    Financial crisis has a way of focusing the attention of public officials. It’s long past time the Santa Rosa City Council began to consider how to spend what they have, not what they want. The money tree has been cut down.

    Thumb up 8 Thumb down 3

  14. Steveguy says:

    If Safeway or any store wanted to be in the Roseland Shopping Center, they would try to be there. I suspect red tape.

    Lola’s does just fine. So do other businesses on Sebastopol Road.

    Is the goal a health food store, yoga places, a crystal/healing shop, with 5 coffee shops and a yogurt stand with people living above them ?

    As an aside, it sure seems that Hispanic businesses get favorable treatment by the City. If Lola’s wanted to triple it’s size, as they have done why no public outrage like if it was a Safeway store ?

    Hmmm.

    Thumb up 11 Thumb down 4

  15. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @CS – “Of course knowing that the “tax increment funding scheme” wouldn’t be sufficent they are also able to issue bonds payable with the same insufficeint “tax increment”.”
    .
    This is not how it works. The RAs borrow money through bonds to seed initial investment (often with MUCH larger private investment), then use the incremental tax to pay off the bond.
    .
    And as to your other point, yes it would be nice if local non-government organizations could stop up and fix parks and the like, and it is actually happening with SOME of the closing state parks, but this is not the norm. ESPECIALLY in poorer areas, where the local folks do not have the resources. The City would love to get more volunteers to help with our parks and keeping the creeks free of garbage. I’m sure if you got a group together that wanted to adopt a park, they would be open to it. But that doesn’t address issues like grocery deserts. How does a local group bring in someone to fix up the empty Roseland shopping center?

    Thumb up 5 Thumb down 4

  16. Follower says:

    Redevelopment Agencies are a GREAT idea.
    It just doesn’t work.
    God knows we tried.
    Time to move on….

    Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3

  17. RICHARD says:

    ” … many … people … may not fully understand the impact to … quality of life with the pending Feb. 1 elimination of Redevelopment … What does this mean to Santa Rosa? …”Brownfield cleanup: The Hyatt Vineyard Creek, … Airfield Park would not have been possible.” – from the above article

    Ms MILLISON and Mr GOUIN that is not quite right, is it?

    Federal brownfield funds are available and were used to clean up Airfield Park. The contamination was only cleaned up at the hotel site. The creek was not cleaned up. We were told the children would be able to play in the creek. Last time I looked, there were signs warming to stay away because of contamination. This city can not be trusted.

    HEY HEY HO HO REDEVELOPMENT MUST GO !

    Thumb up 21 Thumb down 6

  18. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @Money – “Like Oakland, I’d bet that the re-development jobs were in… police… mayors office…… fire department….. and city council staff.”
    .
    I’ll take that bet. The jobs will come from Redevelopment Staff and support staff in other departments (accounting, payroll, IT).

    Thumb up 3 Thumb down 8

  19. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @IOC – “Millison is confusing Santa Rosa with Clovis or Petaluma. There is very little sprawl in Santa Rosa by comparison with those cities.”
    .
    The only reason that is true is because of the “left agenda” that was voted in to have strict urban growth boundaries. We will continue to grow, that will not stop. The question is where do yo want to put that growth? More McRanches in the unincorporated areas? Or more in the Cities? I for one would like to preserve the natural beauty of Sonoma, and put that growth into the existing urban areas.

    Thumb up 4 Thumb down 12

  20. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @Richard – “Ms MILLISON and Mr GOUIN, how is receiving $ 714,169 instead of $ 1,000,000 better for our fair city ?”
    .
    And what of the value of having a vibrant, bustling Railroad Square? How many jobs exist there now that didn’t before the convention center went in? We once feared that RR Sq needed to be reconnected to the downtown, or it would further decay into squalor – now we want the connection to save downtown. You are looking to narrowly.

    Thumb up 2 Thumb down 14

  21. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @Follower – “People in the Community get together & help a neighbor paint a fence, fix a roof, shelter homeless, etc.”
    .
    Maybe back when we were all farmers in small communities. Certainly not true in cities. What you and most current Republicans are advocating for is a return to Laissez-faire capitalism. Not this liberal.

    Thumb up 3 Thumb down 11

  22. Commonsense says:

    @LBR,
    My point may not have been clear, but basically it was that we don’t need a governmnet organzation or agency to deal with local “blight”. We can deal with it locally, within the community. If we want a local park to replace an empty field overgrown with weeds, we can do that without a complicated, complex government agency.
    Also, RDA’s aren’t “local community groups” in my humble opinion, they are a government agency who’s funding is tied directly to property taxes collected by the county treasurer (local but governemnt just the same). More specifically they are financed via the “tax increment” related to the “redeveloped” property, whether residential or commercial. Of course knowing that the “tax increment funding scheme” wouldn’t be sufficent they are also able to issue bonds payable with the same insufficeint “tax increment”.

    Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  23. RICHARD says:

    ” … many … people … may not fully understand the impact to … quality of life with the pending Feb. 1 elimination of Santa Rosa’s Redevelopment Agency. … What does this mean to Santa Rosa? … It means a loss of Affordable housing … ” – from the above article.

    “The Redevelopment Agency Annual Housing Activity Report 2011
    total development cost of $ 18,987,895.
    Total Affordable Units ………………….. 52″

    That is $ 365,152 per unit.

    HEY HEY HO HO REDEVELOPMENT MUST GO !

    Thumb up 21 Thumb down 5

  24. RICHARD says:

    ” You can contact state Sen. Noreen Evans, D-Santa Rosa,….www.senate.ca.gov/senators .Assembly member… Michael Allen, D-Santa Rosa…www.assembly.ca.gov/assemblymembers ” – from the above article

    Good idea, I did send them an email and asked them to end redevelopment – for ever.

    HEY HEY HO HO REDEVELOPMENT MUST GO – AND DON’T COME BACK !!

    Thumb up 20 Thumb down 6

  25. Follower says:

    @Commonsense
    That’s what we used to do & will again. People in the Community get together & help a neighbor paint a fence, fix a roof, shelter homeless, etc.

    But then people began to get sucked into the group think of liberalism were the objective is a centralized Government and the “Community” became the entire nation.

    Well the people in Sebastopol aren’t going to load up the pick up trucks & drive out to Cloverdale Alabama to clean up blight. So we can just tax them & use that money to pay someone to clean up that blight.

    Redevelopment!

    On paper, it doesn’t sound like a bad idea. But then greedy, lazy people get involved & before you know it, that tax money is getting used for other things.
    And then what little money DOES make to the intended destination isn’t enough because someone’s brother-in-law is getting the contract & he needs to pad the bill so he can grease the officials in charge of paying out the money.

    So they need MORE taxes.

    And more bureaucracy to manage it all and round & round we go until we get to where we are now, BROKE!

    The sad thing is that EVERYONE KNOWS this is what is happening.

    Some of us are sick of it, some of us vote Democrat.

    Thumb up 22 Thumb down 5

  26. RICHARD says:

    “Hotel/Conference [Hyatt]… The Agency completed construction of this project during fiscal year 2003…

    Lease Agreements became effective in June 2003, including … a profit sharing agreement in the form of participation rent… The Agency received the first participation rent in the amount of $421,362 in fiscal year 2008. … in fiscal year 2009 was $292,807. The Agency received no participation rent in fiscal years 2010 and 2011.” – AGENCY

    The Agency spent about $ 12,500,000 on Hyatt. At 1% simple interest that would have generated $ 1,000,000 by now and we would still have the $ 12,500,000. Of course more than 1% interest could have been gotten.

    Ms MILLISON and Mr GOUIN, how is receiving $ 714,169 instead of $ 1,000,000 better for our fair city ?

    HEY HEY HO HO REDEVELOPMENT MUST GO !!

    Thumb up 21 Thumb down 5

  27. Dogs Rule says:

    Demise of redevelopment is one happy day for tax payers.

    Thumb up 20 Thumb down 6

  28. Its Our Constitution says:

    Millison and Gouin are bureaurcrats pushing the left agenda of in fill growth. Tranlated in English to boxes built next to train tracks to foster the good train loli flop.

    Millison is confusing Santa Rosa with Clovis or Petaluma. There is very little sprawl in Santa Rosa by comparison with those cities.

    Low income housing is a fiction. It is taxpayer paid housing much as they have in large cities and most of it is called slums or the projects. Santa Rosa doesn’t need any more of this type of housing.

    Santa Rosa should be attracting businesses that support a technical, well paid workforce. Not more low paying restaurant, gardening or laboring jobs. That needs to be the focus, not building housing for the working poor.

    Good riddance to redevelopment as practiced in Sonoma County for 50 years.

    Thumb up 21 Thumb down 4

  29. DeeDee says:

    God bless you Jerry Brown for driving a stake through the heart of this civic vampire.

    Thumb up 20 Thumb down 4

  30. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @RC – “As to the state raiding local agencies, a better way of putting it would be that they were backing off their obligation to make good the diverted money.”
    .
    I’m referring to the raiding of local money for the last 5 years or so, this is just the most recent iteration.

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 11

  31. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @RC – “What will happen is that the state will be freed of from having to compensate schools, etc., for the diverted money.”
    .
    What is confusing about this!? Money that used to go to Santa Rosa will go to the State. They in turn use this money to pay schools. The money that they had been using to pay schools before now goes to balance the State budget. The net effect is that that money is no longer local. Santa Rosa gets less. The schools get the same. The State gets more. Local money goes to the state.

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 11

  32. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @CS – “Why can’t local communities come together and form their own organizations (private or otherwise) to help alleviate blight in their own backyard?”
    .
    This is exactly what Redevelopment Agencies are – local organizations to fight blight in their own backyards.

    Thumb up 2 Thumb down 14

  33. Rosa Koire says:

    Get out the violins and the tissue–it’s a Wake at the Redevelopment funeral.

    The City of Santa Rosa played the dirtiest tricks available to them (no doubt learned at National League of Cities or CRA workshops)to slam through the Gateways Redevelopment Project.

    I was on the citizens oversight committee and was shocked at the vicious tactics used by Gouin and his minions. The consultant’s justification for the blight was fraudulent, the city ran a disinformation campaign against anyone speaking the truth about the project, and the City even published a fake ordinance in the PD hoping that we would use it in our referendum books. It was an education in corruption to witness the City of Santa Rosa’s behavior during the Gateways Project.

    All of David Gouin’s high sounding rhetoric is a mask for these plans to indebt the taxpayers for 30-45 years. So what if you get a few street lights and a hotel (that never paid its debt)–we will pay and pay and pay and pay. And so will your kids and grandkids.

    Unsustainable. Redevelopment. RIP.
    For the real story see Santa Rosa Neighborhood Coalition dot com

    Thumb up 18 Thumb down 3

  34. Money Grubber says:

    And why, I wonder, has the Press Democrat not reported upon the specific job titles, department, and government entity that are being cut due to the redevelopment action?

    Like Oakland, I’d bet that the re-development jobs were in… police… mayors office…… fire department….. and city council staff.

    Any bets?

    Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1

  35. Steveguy says:

    One less pie to steal from.

    The Government has many pies.

    Us citizens are getting tired of pie, so they serve us cake. Can’t win for losing.

    Thumb up 22 Thumb down 1

  36. Reality Check says:

    LBR,

    You are sidestepping the money flow. RDAs divert money that would otherwise go to schools, etc. The state promised to make up the difference.

    Sounds great. Free money from Sacramento to fix blighted areas. So, RDAs got carried away in the territory they labeled blighted and what they spent the money on. And state ran into financial problems. Some adjustment was overdue.

    As to the state raiding local agencies, a better way of putting it would be that they were backing off their obligation to make good the diverted money. And with good reason, given the state’s financial circumstances and widespread abuses by RDAs.

    Come on, two-thirds of Healdsburg blighted! Santa Rosa’s agency in business for 50 years. Just how long do you think the state should have shouldered this burden–forever?

    Reality had to intrude eventually even in the land of make believe, California.

    Thumb up 28 Thumb down 2

  37. Commonsense says:

    Why is State government the only solution to blight? Why can’t local communities come together and form their own organizations (private or otherwise) to help alleviate blight in their own backyard? Quite frankly, the demise of RDA only shifts the money from one government agency to another, regardless of whether it’s a state or local agency. So, really, this is just infighting between government agencies over tax dollars.

    Thumb up 22 Thumb down 3

  38. Follower says:

    @LbR
    Communism is a good concept too. Everyone works for the good of the community. Who could possibly be against THAT?

    But it never “works” out that way because people are greedy & lazy.

    You have to come to terms with the effects of Human Nature and understand that some things are better left alone. Even bad things like blight.

    The Government can not be the panacea we would all like it too be. So we have to accept the limitations of Government, create boundaries to contain it and make sure it doesn’t breach those boundaries.

    Not sure how to do that? Read the Constitution of the United States of America.
    That’s what that document is all about, beginning to end.

    Thumb up 23 Thumb down 2

  39. Lets be Reasonable says:

    @RC – California voters passed proposition 22 in 2010 because they were tired of the State raiding local agencies to fix their problem. To get around it, Brown tried to blackmail local governments with this redevelopment take-away and partial give-back. Do you really blame local governments fighting this additional attack? Santa Rosa residents voted to temporarily raise our sales tax to help the City get through this economic downturn, and this will likely put us right back where we were.

    Thumb up 3 Thumb down 15

  40. Reality Check says:

    LBR,

    “Now we will see almost half of this local money going to the State.”

    No local money is going to the state. It will go to the local agencies–schools, etc.–that got it before the RDA was formed.

    What will happen is that the state will be freed of from having to compensate schools, etc., for the diverted money.

    I understand that RDA diehards keep repeating the above falsehood. You know better.

    Thumb up 19 Thumb down 2

  41. Lets be Reasonable says:

    While there may have been abuses at some Redevelopment Agencies, the overall concept is still a good one – invest in neglected areas and then use some of the additional property tax revenue from increased property values to repay that investment. The State was not intending to get rid of RAs completely – they just wanted some of the money to help balance their budget. Now we will see almost half of this local money going to the State.

    Thumb up 3 Thumb down 27

  42. Social Dis-Ease says:

    Aw, it’ll be OK guys.

    Hey, I got an idea;
    Why don’t you set the Free Market free?
    It worked before.

    We got by great before redevelopment abuse, we can do it again.

    Hyatt Vineyard Creek?
    Talk about a kinky deal, a liability.

    Don’t fret guys, there’s still all kinds of tools to reconfigure our landscape to ‘Smart Growth’ and undermine Free Market and Property Rights/values.

    Sure, you’ve got ‘Form Based Zoning’,
    which can work as a kind of eminent domain.
    Down zoning (very pervasive in S.R.).
    Priority Development Areas.
    Code enforcement/Fire dept. inspectors.
    Planner’s can still ruin property owner’s dreams, ambitions, values.
    They can still manipulate our town, make certain pieces useless and cheap for an insider.
    You can still pick winners and losers.

    There’s still all kinds of social engineering to carry out ICLEI directive.

    You can’t have it all, just don’t report that to ICLEI…
    they haven’t gotten the memo yet.

    Thumb up 25 Thumb down 2

  43. Reality Check says:

    Millison and Gouin skip over the fact that Brown would have let RDAs continue operating with the proviso that the give back some of the loot. No go. It was all or nothing. Oops.

    More seriously, one might be slightly sympathetic to their argument had they been willing to give an inch. Nope. No acknowledgement that RDA abuse demanded correction, or that it was unreasonable to expect the state to compensate schools, etc., for RDA blight declarations that exceeded anything credible.

    Corruption in government this blatant is painful to behold.

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  44. Follower says:

    “Urge them to support Senate Bill 659 while we figure out how we can steal some more money to keep our phony-baloney jobs!”

    Thumb up 21 Thumb down 4

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