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|Protest $40 million bonds, taxes for Shipyard homebuilding|
|Date||Tuesday April 05|
|Time||3:00 PM - 4:00 PM|
|Import this event into your personal calendar.|
|City Hall steps|
Community press conference 3pm Tuesday, April 5, on City Hall steps
Editorial by Willie Ratcliff
Mouths are locked shut at the Redevelopment Agency about seven mysterious items – involving $40 million in new bonds and taxes for the Hunters Point Shipyard – on the agenda for the Redevelopment Commission meeting Tuesday, April 5. Carried over from the March 1 meeting, we know what the items are called, but we don’t know what they mean. And Redevelopment staff say the soonest we’ll find out is Friday, just four days before the meeting.
I suspect it’s another big giveaway for Lennar – $40 million from us taxpayers to pay for streets and sidewalks and utilities – on top of the giveaway of the land itself of Parcel A, where the huge, corrupt homebuilder wants to build 1,600 new homes sandwiched in between the dump on Parcel E, one of most contaminated in the country, and more recently revealed dumps on Parcel B, all on a Superfund site that’s a long, long way from clean. All the dumps are known to contain radioactive as well as other deadly toxins.
Redevelopment staff say the agency’s top dogs are huddling with Lennar – maybe with the mayor too, who has a personal interest in this development: his cousin, Laurence Pelosi, served as treasurer for his mayoral campaign and until last May as senior vice president of Lennar Communities. Until they come out of the huddle on Friday, not even the members of the Redevelopment Commission, two of whom were just appointed by the mayor on Friday – London Breed and Francee Covington, both African American – are likely to know what the $40 million agenda items are all about.
I don’t think the Commission should vote on any of those seven mystery items until we all – especially the residents of Hunters Point – have had plenty of time to study this new giveaway, and that’s what we’ve told Redevelopment. But I don’t know if they heard us.
So I’m asking everyone who reads this to come out Tuesday to the community’s press conference on the steps of City Hall at 3 p.m. Bring your friends and come out to support the people of Hunters Point – and to support your own health, which is threatened by the radioactivity and other deadly toxins leaking out of those Shipyard dumps into San Francisco Bay and polluting the entire Bay Area. After the press conference, we’ll go inside City Hall to Room 416 for the Redevelopment Commission meeting that starts at 4:00.
Here are the seven mystery items as they were listed on the March 15 agenda and then held over ‘til April 5:
“Establishing Community Facilities District No. 7 covering portions of Phase 1; Hunters Point Shipyard Redevelopment Project Area (Resolution No. 35-2005)
“Forming Community Facilities District No. 7 (Hunters Point Shipyard Phase One Improvements), authorizing the levy of a special tax, and preliminarily establishing an appropriations limit for the community facilities district; Hunters Point Shipyard Redevelopment Project Area (Resolution No. 36-2005)
“Determining necessity to incur bonded indebtedness of Community Facilities District No. 7 (Hunters Point Shipyard Phase One Improvements); Hunters Point Shipyard Redevelopment Project Area (Resolution No. 37-2005)
“Calling a special election in Community Facilities District No. 7 (Hunters Point Shipyard Phase One Improvements); Hunters Point Shipyard Redevelopment Project Area (Resolution No. 38-2005)
“Declaring results of special election in Community Facilities District No. 7 (Hunters Point Shipyard Phase One Improvements) and directing recording of notice of special tax lien; Hunters Point Shipyard Redevelopment Project Area (Resolution No. 39-2005)
“Levying special taxes within the Redevelopment Agency of the City and County of San Francisco Community Facilities District No. 7 (Hunters Point Shipyard Phase One Improvements); Hunters Point Shipyard Redevelopment Project Area (Resolution No. 40-2005)
“Authorizing issuance of and sale of special tax bonds for Redevelopment Agency of the City and County of San Francisco Community Facilities District No. 7 (Hunters Point Shipyard Phase One Improvements) in an amount not to exceed $40,000,000, authorizing the execution of an indenture of trust, and approving and authorizing related documents and actions; Hunters Point Shipyard Redevelopment Project Area (Resolution No. 41-2005)”
Back on March 19, we wrote to Redevelopment with the following questions. You guessed it: despite many reminder calls, we’ve received no response. We asked:
l “What is Community Facilities District No. 7? What is its geographic area?
l “Who will vote? Isn’t it true that nobody lives in the Shipyard now? And when will the special election take place?
l “Who will be taxed?
l “What exactly is the purpose of the bond proceeds? Are they to pay for the infrastructure – streets, sidewalks, undergrounding of utilities and the like for Lennar’s residential development? Although that’s standard in project areas that are unattractive to developers, please explain why such an expensive incentive is necessary for residential development at the Shipyard, which is such a desirable opportunity that some of the largest developers in the country competed for it.”
Our letter also asked: “I understand that Mayor Newsom announced a moratorium last week on bonded indebtedness. Will that mean a postponement of the issuance and sale of this $40 million bond package, assuming it is approved by the Commission?”
Since we wrote the letter, we’ve heard from another activist that Lennar may be trying to cut back on the community benefits it promised in the Environmental Impact Report. Remember: Lennar is notorious for building a subdivision of homes on its own toxic dump in Florida. They’re known for corruption, not trustworthiness.
Our letter concluded with what Bay View readers know well, that “our newspaper strongly opposes any development at the Shipyard until it’s completely clean – we support and expect full compliance with Proposition P. And we firmly believe that when the time for development comes, the community – and not an outside developer – should be in charge. Frankly, we are outraged that San Francisco intends to give Florida-based Lennar not only the land but $40 million to proceed with the very profitable private development of 1,600 homes – or more. How can that be justified?”
See you Tuesday! Meanwhile, call Mayor Newsom at (415) 554-6141 and ask him to explain those seven agenda items, the $40 million mystery.
Email Bay View publisher Willie Ratcliff at firstname.lastname@example.org.