Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Governor's Retort: Cities have an obligation to help fund schools

Click on this link to get the original article with lots of wonderful links: Morning Report: The Governor's Retort
January 25, 2011
Voice of San Diego
by Andrew Donohue

The San Diego leaders fighting Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to kill redevelopment have a simple, digestible argument: Sacramento should get its grubby hands off of our local money and solve its own problems.

Looks like Brown, though, might have just one-upped them.

He's framing the debate in a different way: His plan takes $1 billion away from redevelopment and gives it to the state's ailing schools. Scott Lewis takes that a step further and shows how education was originally supposed to be the very check and balance against redevelopment abuse, but Prop. 13 did away with that.

People like Mayor Jerry Sanders and Councilman Kevin Faulconer have big dreams for San Diego's redevelopment money - things like Convention Center expansions and football stadiums - and are fighting hard against the governor.

"But Brown has now illustrated better than ever before that the money for these dreams comes from education more than anything," Lewis writes. "The state will continue to plow money into education but it's time for downtown and other redevelopment areas to do their part.".

And the Blight Beat Goes On

• Faulconer got six of his colleagues to join him in waving their fists at the governor on Monday night, though they have yet to engage in the last-second redevelopment binges that other cities have enjoyed.

• Our Liam Dillon, meanwhile, is waving his fist right back at the city's downtown redevelopment agency. He's begun our latest public records battle — Blight Watch.

That agency, the Centre City Development Corp., has refused to turn over documents that go to the very core of the agency's continued existence. Agencies have 10 days to turn over documents after a public records request except in extraordinary circumstances. It's been than seven weeks and all we're hearing is that "it's complicated."

We'll be dialing up the pressure this week to ensure that the public records do indeed become public.

• There's another aspect of redevelopment suddenly getting attention now that it's in jeopardy: affordable housing.

One CCDC official recently made the bold claim that his agency had created more affordable housing units than all of Los Angeles' redevelopment areas combined. We fact checked it and here's what we found: A big fat "false."...

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