By JEREMY HAY
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Cotati’s ambitious plan to revitalize its downtown won the approval on Wednesday of officials charged with managing what were formerly
The oversight board also voted with little discussion to support a redevelopment-funded project to build a downtown train station planned for East Cotati Avenue.
The seven-member board consists of officials and residents of the city, County Supervisor David Rabbitt, and representatives of other jurisdictions whose taxes helped fund the redevelopment agency.
The board agreed that both projects were “enforceable obligations.” That means they are projects to which Cotati’s redevelopment agency — dissolved this year by Gov. Jerry Brown — had made financial commitments that must be met.
The board’s decisions are subject to review by the state, which must approve the spending.
Together the projects require $1.1 million in what were set aside as redevelopment funds.
City officials said both are key to spurring economic growth in Cotati.
“These are catalyst projects,” said City Manager Dianne Thompson.
Both have received federal grants that require the city to match with local funds.
“We’re basically trying to meet our matching grant obligations,” said Damien O’Bid, the city engineer and public works director.
The board’s responsibility is “to dispose of all assets and properties of the former redevelopment agency … in the best interests of the taxing entities.”
Among those assets is a half-acre parcel adjacent to the site of the planned train station. Mill Valley developer Larry Colvin, who has planned a mixed-use project for the property, asked Wednesday what will happen to it.
“It would be great to know for long-term planning,” he said.
“We don’t know yet,” Thompson said.
The oversight board next meets at 2 p.m., May 15 in the Cotati Police Department’s community room.