Today Mayor Acquanetta Warren, Mayor Paul Leon of Ontario and Mayor Pro Tem Sam Spagnolo held a press conference announcing their opposition to the Administration's January State budget proposal to eliminate redevelopment agencies and shift their funds from local communities to the state. I would like to share the following comments from Mayor Warren:
I am here today with many other community leaders because we’re infuriated that, once again, Sacramento is attempting to balance its budget by raiding local government funds.
Just three months ago, an overwhelming 61% of California’s electorate voted to pass Proposition 22 to prevent state raids of local government funds, including redevelopment funding. This was passed overwhelmingly because they know that redevelopment supports families.
Many others will talk about jobs, projects, and tax dollars; but, the bottom line truth is we are really talking about FAMILIES!
REDEVELOPMENT SUPPORTS FAMILIES!
It creates jobs, good jobs that support families;
It builds streets and storm drains and other projects that protect our lives and properties;
It supports schools by building needed streets and sidewalks and intersections that create “safe walking routes” for children;
It helps families by keeping local taxes lower;
The State’s own numbers show that killing redevelopment will bring very little financial relief for the State or the Schools.
All over Fontana we have examples of redevelopment at work, building housing for our seniors, parks for our kids, and a safer community for all families who chose to make Fontana their home.
More than 1,100 low-income homes including almost 400 senior units in Fontana’s downtown;
Sewer, storm drains and sidewalks throughout the City.
Pacific Electric Trail – converted an old unused railroad line to a regional walking and biking trail for our families and others throughout the region;
I-10 Cypress Overpass Improvements
Just head east on Foothill Boulevard and see firsthand a road project that is changing the most dangerous street in the country for pedestrians into a safe, functional and beautiful roadway.
This is not “corporate welfare” this is “community well-being”. This is supporting families.
Here in Fontana we know that shutting down redevelopment will cost our community over 6,100 jobs, and billions in future economic activity.
These are staggering numbers.
It would truly be tragic for our community, our local economy, and the thousands of families who call Fontana their home if this proposal became law.
We urge the Governor and Legislature to abandon this proposal.
We appreciate the difficult choices facing Governor Brown. But there is nothing more important than building the state’s economy. Redevelopment is the best tool available to accomplish this.
The redevelopment proposal is a non-starter for cities and for the residents we represent. It will cause significant economic damage for decades to come.