State court says yes to RDA shutdown Other Issues, posted by Editor, Mountain View Voice Online, on Dec 30, 2011 at 3:17 pm
Californians bid farewell not only to 2011 this week, but also to the state's redevelopment agencies (RDA). The California Supreme Court upheld a bill that shut down the nearly 400 RDAs scattered around the state in a ruling issued on Dec. 29.
Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, December 30, 2011, 10:45 AM
Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community, on Dec 31, 2011 at 6:23 pm
It you walk down Castro Street most of these was done with RDA money which i am sure if you own a Mall or a large shopping center you can can investors or capital. If it comes to property tax just think how much the single family home and other property outside the RDA zone has increased. There shoulb be oversight and rules to stop misuse of money, Castro St doesn't look like a misuse of funds.
Posted by gcoladon, a resident of the North Whisman neighborhood, on Jan 4, 2012 at 2:22 pm gcoladon is a member (registered user) of Mountain View Online
I totally agree with you, I think Castro St (built with RDA capital) is awesome. I also think the Shoreline area is a vast improvement over what was there before, and it was also built with RDA-like money.
Now that both Castro St and Shoreline are built, though, it is worth asking if it's time to wind those projects down. For every thing there is a season.
Posted by Steven Nelson, a resident of the Cuesta Park neighborhood, on Jan 4, 2012 at 10:10 pm
Castro Street district (Revitalization) was formed over 40 years ago. The City would not let go of diverted property tax funds. In the current tax year the County Tax Rate table H-3 shows $1,757,268 was diverted from public education (elementary, high school, community college, co. board).
RDA capital = school and county tax diversions.
The County of Santa Clara was one of the contenders in the court battle, over $90 million is lost to the county every year from RDAs.
Shoreline RDA = North Bayshore diverts 99% of education property taxes (about 1/3 is being temporarily restored)
None of this in MV was a misuse of funds - but to continue is IMO a "mis-priority of taxes".
Posted by Seer Clearly, a resident of the Blossom Valley neighborhood, on Jan 4, 2012 at 10:34 pm
Castro Street is not done. There are still too many junky mini-malls and shuttered businesses (like "Food Street") that blight the street. There is also the opportunity to completely remove cars from Castro Street which would make Mountain View one of the first cities in the bay area to really emphasize community and personal connections
Posted by Hardin, a resident of the Cuesta Park neighborhood, on Jan 5, 2012 at 8:51 am
I agree with Garrett on this. In fact, if we have a system that has been proven to be both responsible and effective in utilizing funds to improve areas like the Castro Street district and the Shoreline area, we should continue to support this model. After all, how often is it that we have effective governmental operations?
Seeing the vast improvements made to the Castro Street district and Shoreline areas, a case should be made to now concentrate on other areas of the City, by redirecting some of those funds.
Note, I advocate only diverting some of the funds, as both the Castro street district and Shoreline area should continue to receive focused support to maintain and improve their areas. They play an enormous role in the economic and quality of life in Mountain View, but developing other strategic areas will provide opportunities for these special districts to work synergistically in making Mountain View prosperous and a desirable place to live and work.
Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community, on Jan 5, 2012 at 9:22 am
I remember that plan to close Castro Street to cars, this plan was not well liked, the idea to increase the size of the sidewalk won out. The only parts that made sense to close was the 200 and 300 blocks, this would have set traffic onto the side streets which wasn't well liked either. The street was wide so lots of room to play which is why we got the present plan.
As for strip mall, mini malls some of this was built in another time, Castro Street at one time was the main center of Mtn View, offices and sevices needed the space.
Hope we can the RDA's back, just like everything that is built is needs to be maintained just like mall owners, the need for upgrapes and ongoing improvements. If they do came back how about a rule that after so many years money has to be set aside for schools.
Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community, on Jan 5, 2012 at 9:28 am
Also a side note, due to that fact that the downtown area was greatly improved, and looks alot better. Just think of the the homes that were fixed up, the new buildings that were built outside the RDA, downtown was a big selling point. How much of the property tax, sales tax and business fees were collected over the years, how mnay new people and businesses opened their wallets to the schools
Posted by RDA is good, BUT very wastefull, a resident of the Monta Loma neighborhood, on Jan 5, 2012 at 6:49 pm
Like most government projects, there is no accountability to where all the money goes. Waste waste and more waste. Here are some arguments why it's a failure. And by the way, compared with 1980's, Castro looks like it just has a fresh new coat of paint. Reminds me of The Emperor's New Clothes. All the money was stolen from our schools. If we are going to waste money, might as well waste it on the schools.
“For a government activity which consumes more than $5.5 billion of public resources annually, we should be troubled that there are no objective performance measures demonstrating that taxpayer’s are receiving optimal return for each invested dollar,” said Chiang in a statement. “Locally-controlled economic development is vital to California’s long-term prosperity. However, the existing approach – born in the 1940’s – is not how anyone concerned with performance, efficiency, and accountability would draw it up today.”
“The lack of accountability and transparency is a breeding ground for waste, abuse, and impropriety,” said Chiang in a statement. “In whatever form local redevelopment takes in the future, the level of oversight and openness must be consistent with the amount of public dollars entrusted to their care.”
Posted by Hardin, a resident of the Cuesta Park neighborhood, on Jan 6, 2012 at 11:05 pm
"And by the way, compared with 1980's, Castro looks like it just has a fresh new coat of paint. "
You're kidding right?
And quoting a politician like Chiang, who is responsible for a state budget that is arguably one of the worst in the nation doesn't really help his credibility, or yours.
Chiang should take some of his own advice and medicine when he speaks about using metrics to control costs and provide accountability. I see none of this happening at the State level, which is in much worse shape than Mountain View by far.