A long habit of not thinking a thing is wrong gives it a superficial appearance of being right  –Thomas Paine

NEWS RELEASE: CALIFORNIA REDEVELOPMENT DEAD ON ARRIVAL?  THE CALIFORNIA REDEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION AND LEAGUE OF CALIFORNIA CITIES HAVE SUED CALIFORNIA STATE CONTROLLER JOHN CHIANG AND THE DIRECTOR OF THE CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE ANA MATOSANTOS.  THE SUPREME COURT HAS MANDATED A STAY OR FREEZE ON ALL CITY REDEVELOPMENT, UNTIL THE ISSUE CAN BE RESOLVED APPROXIMATELY SIX MONTHS FROM NOW IN THE BEGINNING MONTHS OF 2012.  THIS MEANS THAT THE SUPREME COURT HAS MANDATED EXISTING REDEVELOPMENT AGENCIES FROM INCURRING NEW INDEBTNESS, TRANSFERRING ASSETS, ACQUIRING REAL PROPERTY, ENTERING INTO NEW PARTNERSHIPS, ADOPTING OR AMENDING REDEVELOPMENT PLANS ETC.,  AND ESPECIALLY THE FOLLOWING:  ENTERING INTO NEW CONTRACTS OR EVEN MODIFYING EXISTING CONTRACTS.  EVEN THE NEW ORDINANCE ADOPTED BY CITY COUNCIL THIS WEEK IS NOW DOA.

ON JUNE 29, 2011 GOVERNOR BROWN SUSPENDED ALL REDEVELOPMENT ACITIVITIES IN THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA, WHILE CRITICIZING THE AGENCIES FOR DRAINING TAX DOLLARS AWAY FROM SCHOOLS AND PUBLIC SAFETY AT A TIME WHEN REVENUES ARE RUNNING THIN.   THE STATE GAVE CITIES TWO OPTIONS TO THIS SUSPENSION,  AS A RESULT OF THE ABUSES OF REDEVELOPMENT, DISSOLVE IT OR CONTINUE IT.  IF YOU CHOOSE TO CONTINUE, THE PAPERWORK THE STATE EXPECTS CITIES TO FILL OUT, IS TEDIOUS, AND THIS HAS UPSET MOST CITY GOVERNMENTS AS OURS. THEREFORE, OUR CITY ISSUED AN ORDINANCE TO CONTINUE THE VOLUNTARY REDEVELOPMENT PROGRAM.  THIS CHOICE TO CONTINUE BECOMES AS THE STATE CALLS IT “ VOLUNTARY CHOICE”. THEREFORE ENTERING INTO THIS CONVENANT CITIES ENTER A MORE STRUCTURED PROGRAM TO FORCE THE CITY TO BECOME MORE RESPONSIBLE, THIS IS WHAT THE STATE’S VIEW THAT IT WILL MITIGATE ABUSE OF FUNDS. 

THIS IS WITH CONSIDERATION OF THE MERE FACT THAT THE CITY WILL HAVE TO PAY FOR BONDS JULY, 1, 2012, AND WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO PAY FOR IS A FACT, AND EX-RIVERSIDE CITY MANAGER BRAD HUDSON IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS.  THE COMMUNITY OF RIVERSIDE WILL INADVERTANLY HAVE TO PAY FOR THIS THRU HIGHER UTILITIES SUCH AS ELECTRIC, WATER AND SEWER FEES.  IF YOU LOOK A OTHER CITIES, YOU WILL REALIZE WHAT 2 BILLION OF CONSTRUCTION REALLY LOOKS LIKE. REDEVELOPEMENT CRITICS SAY THAT, TOO OFTEN, THE MONEY BENEFITS PRIVATE BUSINESSES AND STEAMROLLS PROPERTY OWNERS.  ASSEMBLYMAN CHRIS NORBY, R-FULLERTON, SAID THE AGENCIES LONG AGO OUTLIVED THEIR USEFULNESS AND SHOULD BE SHUT DOWN, PARTICULARLY AS THE STATE CONFRONTS A $25.4 BILLION BUDGET GAP. BUT IN THEIR ARROGANCE, THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE DID NOT TAKE THIS SUSPENSION WELL, THEIR ENTITLEMENT WAS CLEAR, GOING AS FAR AS CALLING THE OBLIGATION PAYMENT  “RANSOM” AND A FORM OF “THEFT“.  AS INDICATED ON THEIR WEBSITE.  YOU WOULD THINK THAT THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE WOULD BE ON THE TEAM EFFORT AGAINST SUPPORTING SUCH WASTE, BUT ARROGANCE IS DEEP SEATED AND IRREVERSIBLE AS A MALIGNANT CANCER THAT IT HAS LED THEM TO SUE THE STATE.  THE STATE IS YOU THE TAXPAYER.  THE CALIFORNIA REDEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION AND CALIFORNIA LEAGUE OF CITIES, OF WHICH MAYOR LOVERIDGE IS PART OF, ARE TAXPAYER FUNDED LOBBYING INTEREST GROUPS WHICH ARE SUING YOU (TAXPAYER) TO GET THEIR SPENDING MONEY.  IT’S AS IF YOU GIVE A CHILD AN ALLOWANCE, WHICH THEY KEEP SPENDING AN IN TURN, THEY KEEP COMING BACK TO YOU FOR MORE.  THE REAL SAD CONTRADICTION IS THAT YOU (TAXPAYER) ARE ALSO PAYING THE LITIGATION FEES TO SUE YOURSELF FOR MORE OF YOUR MONEY.   THE CALIFORNIA REDEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION AND CALIFORNIA LEAGUE OF CITIES FUNDED A CAMPAIGN THAT ULTIMATELY STOPPED SERIOUS EMINENT DOMAIN REFORM IN CALIFORNIA, LEAVING PROPERTY OWNERS VUNERABLE TO SEIZURE IF CITIES FIND A BETTER USE FOR THEIR LAND OR BUSINESS. 

BUT HOW MUCH DEBT SERVICE ANNUALLY IS THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE PAYING ON RENAISSANCE PROJECTS?  IF $1.58 BILLION IS THE TOTAL FOR DOING ALL RENAISSANCE PROJECTS, WHAT’S THE TOTAL COST WITH INTEREST OVER THE LIFE OF ALL THE BORROWED MONEY?  IN OTHER WORDS, WHEN IT’S ALL PAID OFF, WHAT WILL THE TOTAL COST BE?   THIS WOULD THEREFORE BE A PROJECTION, BECAUSE BONDS COULD BE REFINANCED OR PAID OFF EARLY DEPENDING ON THE ECONOMY ETC.  WE MUST ALSO TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION WHAT THE LONGEST TERM OF BORROWING FOR THE RENAISSANCE PROJECTS, SUCH AS 30 YEARS ETC.

SO, TOTAL NEW MONEY BONDS ISSUED DURING THE PERIOD AMOUNT TO $1,084,051,402, INCLUDING NON-CONSTRUCTION PROCEEDS, AS INDICATED IN TABLE 1.   THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF OTHER FUNDING SOURCES IN THE RENAISSANCE: 

1. DEVELOPMENT IMPACT FEES.

2.USER FEES.

3. STATE, FEDERAL AND REGIONAL GRANTS.

4. LAND SALE PROCEEDS.

5. PRIVATE FUNDING- SUCH AS RAILROADS, DONATIONS ETC.

6. GENERAL FUND CASH.

7. RDA TAX INCREMENT.

8. CERTAIN OLDER RDA BOND PROCEEDS ALLOCATED TO RENAISSANCE.

9. CERTAIN MEASURE-G PROCEEDS ALLOCATED TO RENNAISSANCE.

10. FUTURE PLANNED RIVERSIDE CONVENTION CENTER BOND ISSUE.

THE ANNUAL DEBT SERVICE AMOUNT VARIES BUT TYPICALLY IS IN THE MID $60 MILLLION RANGE FOR 2012 AND EVEN 2013, AS INDICATED IN THIS TABLE 2.  IN YEAR 2014 THERE IS A BALLOON PAYMENT THAT WILL LIKELY BE REFINANCED.  IT IS WORTH MENTIONING THAT THE VAST MAJORITY OF THE DEBT IS UTILITY DEBT, WHICH THEY ROUTINELY CARRY AND WOULD HAVE REGARDLESS OF THE RENAISSANCE.  THE ACTUAL APPROXIMATE COST OVER THE LIFE OF DEBT WOULD HIT THE $2.0 BILLION MARK.  THEREFORE, BASED ON THE APPROXIMATE POPULATION COUNT IN THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE, EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD IN THE CITY WILL BE LEFT TO PAY FOR THE RIVERSIDE RENAISSANCE IN INCREASED SEWER, WATER, ELECTRIC, PARKING AND GENERAL FUND REPLACEMENT.  THE $2.0 BILLION BREAKDOWN IS AS FOLLOWS:  THE PRINICIPAL IS $1,084,051,402 AND THE INTEREST IS $979,022,581.  TODAY, THE COST TO EACH INDIVIDUAL WILL BE APPROXIMATELY $6,660.00, OR A FAMILY OF FOUR WILL HAVE TO PAY OUT $26,400.00. 

JOHN CHIANG, WHERE ART THOU? YOU CERTAINLY ARE NOT IN RIVERSIDE….

UPDATE:08/28/2011: OF COURSE, THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE AND THE CALIFORNIA REDEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION, A TAXPAYER LOBBYING GROUP, WON’T TAKE NO FOR AN ANSWER ON THE SUPREME COURTS RULING OF PLACING A STAY ON ALL REDEVELOPMENT.  MOST HAVE SAID SINCE IT WAS LEGISLATED IN, IT CAN BE LEGISLATED OUT.  BUT THE CRA, WHO SUED THE STATE ON THE CITY’S BEHALF DID NOT LIKE THE RULING.  THE CRYSTAL CLEAR RULING PLACES A STAY ON ALL REDEVELOPMENT ACTIVITY UNTIL THE ISSUE CAN BE RESOLVED IN JANUARY 2012, THIS IS TO PREVENT FURTHER QUESTIONS OF FINANCIAL MOVEMENT.  BUT THE CRA HAS NOW ASKED THE SUPREME COURT FOR A CLARIFYING ORDER WHICH WOULD ALLOW LOCAL REDEVELOPMENT AGENCIES WHICH HAVE ADOPTED ORDINANCES TO THE NEW VOLUTARY STATE RULES, PAY THE ENFORCEMENT OBLIGATION PAYMENTS AND CONTINUE TO  DO LOCAL RDA BUSINESS AS USUAL.  BUT WHAT IS QUITE IRONIC IS THAT THE CRA AND THE CITY DID NOT LIKE THE VOLUNTEER PROGRAM TO BEGIN WITH, THAT’S WHY THEY ARE SUING.  SINCE SUING THE STATE PLACED A STAY ON ALL ACTIVITY, THE CRA AND THE CITY NOW WANT THE STATE TO NOW HONOR THE VOLUNTEER PROGRAM IN THE INTERIUM, THAT THEY ORIGINALLY SUED AGAINST.  GO FIGURE? 

KEEP CONNECTED WITH TMC, RATED RIVERSIDE’S MOST “SLANDEROUS”  BLOG SITE! NOW EXCLUSIVELY ON FILE WITH THE RIVERSIDE COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE… 

Comments
  1. facts says:

    How can you state that the City won’t be able to pay bond debt on July 1? That’s a very serious charge. If you have facts to back that statement, don’t you feel an obligation to present them for the public’s good? It’s ok if you don’t have clear facts, but then you should really present such statements as you opinion or your concern. Wouldnkt that be more geuinely accurate? Thanks for considering this input.

    • where are your facts that they can pay? We will have to repay 15 million in sewer money alone, not to mention the sewer bond 204 millions, even though they were to be repaid with sewer money, the city borrowed 27 million in sewer monies so how will we repay the bonds more money inter-fund loan schemes. I have the facts and you are welcome to view them, 951-241-9443.

    • Tell me how we will pay 123 million in Redevelopment debt another 50 million in bonds. Outsource our police dept. and get rid of fire????

  2. thirtymiles says:

    Mr Facts, Thanks for your comment, we welcome documentation. If you have facts or documentation you are welcome to submit if you think or know we are wrong, or just let us know what facts you have.
    MY FACTS:
    19 million “Extortion Money” to State of California (that’s what the citys website calls it)
    48 Million APPROX in Bonds DUE 2012
    10 Million Again in “Extortion Money” to State of Calif. 2012
    That is almost 60 million and we lose Measure C Monies 2012
    100 Million approx 2013 DUE
    And again 10 Million Extortion Money
    Our entire budget is a $190 mil for each year just basics, You and I both know revenue will be down but to be correct the proposed revenue is $211 mil, now you add an additional $190 mil on to that Good Luck!

    Now lets look at revenue:
    Increases:
    Facility Fees attached to Fox Theatre ticket sales. That means if I buy a ticket for $60.00, I will be charged another $20.00, no thanks! This is to raise another $300,000.00 to cover Fox Theatre cost.
    Fines DOUBLED: $8 mil This means the city is either going to double the price for a ticket, or be aggressively writing them.
    Library fines down, most people have computers to look things up. If the citizens vote no on Measure C the Libraries are going to be hit hard!
    Museum Fees are way down, You remember Star Trek!
    No Revenue from Market Broiler/ Provider Raincross Café NONE, $00000000.00
    Legal costs will sky rocket next year.
    Not to mention the Maintenance on all the redevelopment projects, we will begin to start looking a little shabby.
    The cost/expenses will outshadow the entire budget.

  3. facts says:

    Thanks for your reply. But the money needed to repay bonds for utility construction, for example, comes from the Utility, not the general fund (which supports things you cited like the museum and library). Maybe you should ask them to tell you what the general fund’s payment costs will be.

    • Well, if it is going to be repaid by utility monies how are we going to do it, they borrowed/ took (electric) it all through inter-fund loans/transfers. Ask for the inter-fund loans and transfers, you’ll see.

    • thirtymiles says:

      That’s true Facts, their are restrictions and rules to those funds/ accounts, that the City is not following. We did an article on the Jurupa Avenue Extension, whereby the City intensions was to use the Sewer fund for new sewer construction. The sewer fund is to be used for maintenance of preexisting sewers. There are many instances of the City utilizing restrictive funds for other projects and never repleneshinng them themselves, but at higher utility rates to the citizen.

  4. thirtymiles says:

    The comingling of funds are endless, such as the General Fund, Utility Fund, Asset Forfeiture Fund etc. Regardless of the fund it is money in and money out; transfer in and transfer out. Even the Utility Fund has a breaking point!

  5. facts says:

    Nope. There are legal prohibitions against co-mingling Utility funds with General Funds. Sorry, but that’s a fact, too. Please, please do some detailed research before reporting things as fact. It does so much to boost our credibility when we as residents challenge the City’s actions. Thank you.

    • There are a lot of prohibitions that our city does not seem to care about until they are caught. Can you tell me why they paid Connie Leach out of park and rec., development and economic development when she was supposedly a consultant for a mayoral program, and all the funds she collected were put into the general fund, I think not. We have the facts and you can call to view, but I don’t think you will.

  6. kaptalizm says:

    On an entirely unrelated subject, the City plans to tear down the Imperial Hardware Store for an office building. The story was in Sundays Press-Enterprise. Did anyone know about this? An Environmental Impact Report (EIR) is being prepared by Webb & Associates (who else). Webb got the contract to do the EIR as a “supplemental” to a supposed existing contract. The supplemental is worth over $300k, and approval of the supplemental did not require City Council or Redevelopment Agency approval. Unbelievable.

    • kaptalizm says:

      Oops. Sorry. The Council did approve the contract at it’s October 12, 2010 meeting. Sorry for the error.

      • kaptalizm says:

        HOWEVER…the backup to the agenda item says that the City had gone through a competitive bid process to select the firm to do the EIR. I searched the City’s RFP database and found no such Request for Proposal (RFP) for an Environmental Impact Report for the Imperial Hardware Store project. Once again, the City is just handing off projects to their favorite consultants.

      • thirtymiles says:

        Favoritism is alive and well in RiverCity. It’s wonder why the City does not see the value of our historical buildings. Instead, their idea is to use them as facades and props or simply just tearing them down completely. In replacement we have design concepts which does not complement our history, such as Mission Village, Raincross Promenade, M Sole Condominiums, Citrus Towers, and now the new Hyatt. Now they are looking at the Imperial Hardware/ Pioneer Building, as well as the Stalder Building which are on their last leg of breath. You’d be surprised, one city council member felt no sympathy toward any of these historical buildings if they were simply all torn down. The actions that occur in Riverside are a reflection of City Government and failure. People are drawn to history, and cities and communities which value that. Instead we are doing cheaply done constructions, which architectually have no significance and are sitting empty at a operating and maintenance cost to the taxpayer, as the Fox Theatre and the many City accumulated buildings. In addition the city is paying high price consultants to figure how to attract more outsiders in, go figure.

  7. facts says:

    Dvonne,

    This is kinda what I’ve been talking about. So the City was using general fund (discretionary) money to support the Youth Counsel program. There’s no way that could be illegal. BUT the real issues here is:

    1) why did they hide the funding for the position in the Parks budget? (Answer: because our Mayor apparently didn’t want everyone to see how much money is poured into HIS offices’ budget every year!)

    2) How many other positions in the Mayors’ office are funded (wholly or in part) by other departments? In other words, just how much does the Mayors’ office really cost us every year, and WHAT single thing do they produce for over $1 million each year!?!

    3) How much Police Asset Forfeiture dollars went toward Connie Leach’s program while her HUSBAND was the Chief who approved this money?

    Those are the questions to be posed via Freedom of Information Act requests to the City. And the documents they provide will help us confront them with the facts, so they won’t continue to dismiss us as no-nothings and gadflies.

    I hope this is helpful to he writer of this site.

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