Officials in Glendale and other cities say redevelopment power is needed to fund affordable housing, parks and more, while the governor says the agencies unfairly divert as much as $5 billion in tax revenue from schools and county programs.
City officials on Tuesday painted a grim picture of the potential impacts of the governor’s proposal, with the state potentially taking over some city properties — such as the Alex Theatre — and selling them off to pay debts and balance the budget.
But the quick move to issue an additional $50 million in redevelopment bonds could all be for naught, depending on what the state Legislature does, or on what happens with a legal fight brewing between cities and the governor.
Mayor Ara Najarian asked officials if approving the new $50 million bond was a responsible action, since the governor’s proposal almost certainly would invalidate the effort.
“Does anyone really think this is going to work?” he asked.
Bond experts and city officials at the hearing said the move was Glendale’s only shot at protecting more local revenue from Sacramento. The council, acting as the Redevelopment Agency, voted unanimously to approve the bonds.
Council members also voted unanimously to spend as much as $10,000 to help fund a lawsuit by the California Redevelopment Assn. to block Brown’s proposal if it passes.
Philip Lanzafame, the city’s chief assistant director of community development, said the governor’s proposal is legally suspect on several grounds, including the fact that voters passed Proposition 22 in November to stop state raids on local government finances.