All last year, local government nerds throughout California -- this one included -- assumed that Jerry Brown would sign a bill to bring back redevelopment if one landed on his desk. So we were all shocked -- shocked! -- when he vetoed every substantive bill the Legislature gave him. (You can read about my surprise here. And based on the comments of some people at the UCLA land use conference on Friday, some of us are still shocked.
But maybe we shouldn't have been. Maybe it's pretty simple.
Legislative Analyst Mac Taylor has described Governor Brown’s budget proposal as “roughly” balanced. Brown was able to save money from major cut backs- like last year’s dissolution of redevelopment agencies, and voter-approved tax increases, like Prop 30.
Now that DOF has decided 240 redevelopment appeals, the next step shouldn't surprise anybody: The lawsuits are beginning to roll in:
Murrieta has sued DOF over its decision to invalidate two payments – one a $3 million payment to the city from the RDA and the second a $1.2 million payment to developers on an affordable housing project called Monte Vista
I'm sure that by now plenty of people would be willing to kill redevelopment just to put an end to the ping-pong match of debate that has surrounded the governor's budget proposal. While all very civil and often enlightening, it's a debate that has relied on a handful of studies against redevelopment (most prominently Michael Dardia's 1998 PPIC study, "Subsidizing Redevelopment in California") and a single study in favor of redevelopment (the California Redevelopment Association's 2009 study, based on earlier work by the private firm Time Structures [doc]).