The cities and the State of California had a year-long battle over the elimination of redevelopment.
As part of the strategy to close funding gaps in the State’s budget, AB1X 26 and AB1X 27 were signed by the Governor on June, 29, 2011. AB1X 26 eliminates redevelopment and suspends redevelopment agency activities, including incurring indebtedness or entering into or modifying contracts. AB1X 27 establishes a new Alternative Voluntary Redevelopment Program that allows cities to “buy-back” their agency then continue their work improving communities.
On December 29, 2011, the California Supreme Court issued its decision to uphold Assembly Bill X1 26, the measure that was introduced to abolish redevelopment agencies statewide. The Supreme Court found the provisions of AB1X 27 unconstitutional. As a result of the court’s decisions, the City of Montclair lost one of its most vital tools used to promote economic development, create jobs, develop safe and attractive affordable housing, and support to its local businesses. Over the course of its 34 years in operation, the Montclair Redevelopment Agency administered and completed projects that invested millions of dollars in our local economy, and significantly contributed to the quality of life experienced by our City’s more than 37,000 residents who make Montclair their home.
The Agency’s Contributions to the Community
The Montclair Redevelopment Agency invested millions of dollars in the community, including but not limited to:
·$15 million that supported public facilities including Alma Hofman Park improvements, the Montclair Community Collaborative Family Resource Center, and the Montclair Police Facility
·$30 million that provided for crucial public infrastructure projects including the widening of Central Avenue a the I-10 Freeway, Mission Boulevard improvements, and the Ramona Avenue Grade Separation
·$8.8 million that were invested in the City’s local economic development efforts and created over 600 jobs
·$7.8 million that created safe, attractive, and affordable housing for low-income residents
End of Redevelopment Agency/Successor Agency
The elimination of redevelopment has resulted in the loss of several programs and services provided by the Montclair Redevelopment Agency to residents and businesses.
The Successor Agency
On January 12, 2012, the City Council elected to become the successor agency of its former redevelopment agency. The City of Montclair Housing Authority elected to become the successor housing agency. The City and the Montclair Housing Authority, as successor agencies, became operative, on February 1, 2012 when state legislation dissolved the Montclair Redevelopment Agency along with all other redevelopment agencies in the State of California.
Once dissolved, redevelopment agencies will only be able to make payments on existing obligations through their respective successor agencies. These obligations can be found on the Agency’s Recognized Obligation Payment Schedule (ROPS).
An Oversight Board made up of seven members will review and approve a Recognized Obligation Payment Schedule (ROPS), which will be used to pay obligations from January to June 2012. Another ROPS will be implemented for the July to December 2012 payment period. In addition, the Oversight Board is obligated to approve all actions of the Successor Agency.
The Oversight Board was formed in April 2012 pursuant to AB1X 26, which dissolved all redevelopment agencies in the State of California. The seven member Oversight Board consists of the following members:
· Chair William Ruh – Montclair Mayor Paul Eaton Appointee
· Vice Chair Tenice Johnson – County of San Bernardino Citizen Appointee
· Janet Kulbeck – City of Montclair Employee Organization Appointee
· Michael Piotrowski – Alternative City of Montclair Employee Organization Appointee
· John Richardson – County of San Bernardino Appointee
· Phil Hillman – Ontario-Montclair School District Appointee
· Terry Catlin – Inland Empire Utilities Agency Appointee
· Kim Erickson – Chaffey Community College District Appointee
The Oversight Board has fiduciary responsibility to the holders of enforceable obligations and the taxing entities that benefit the distributions of the property tax and other revenue. The Oversight Board will oversee the “winding down” process of the Montclair Redevelopment Agency. The Oversight Board has not established regular meeting dates and times but is anticipated to do so in the future. However, every decision of the Oversight Board is subject to review by the California Department of Finance.
Oversight Board Agendas & Minutes
For additional information, please contact Marilyn J. Staats, Director of Redevelopment/Public Works via email at email@example.com or by phone at (909) 625-9412.
Previous Montclair Redevelopment Agency Background Information
The Montclair Redevelopment Agency was adopted on June 6, 1977 and is made up of members of the Montclair City Council who also serve as the Agency Board of Directors. Provisions of State law enable the Agency to undertake community projects designed to improve certain areas within the City which have suffered economic decline, deterioration of improvements, or which have been unable to attract and promote new private investments to enhance the quality of life in the area.
The Agency was responsible for setting the course of redevelopment in the City of Montclair and for being sure that redevelopment plans are in the best interests of the Community. In directing the City Redevelopment activities, State law provided the Agency with broad governmental functions and authority to accomplish its purpose, including but not limited to: the right to issue bonds for authorized purposes and to expend their proceeds, and the right to acquire, sell, rehabilitate, develop, administer or lease property. The Agency could also demolish buildings, clear land, and cause construction of improvements including streets and sidewalks.
The former responsibilities of the Redevelopment Agency included:
- Rejuvenatation and upgrade of areas of blight or neglect
- Stimulationof private investment
- Strengthening of the City's financial base including sales and property taxes
- Improving and/or constructing public infrastructure
- Creating and securing local jobs
Consistent with these goals, the Agency was actively involved in many projects and programs. A few of these included:
- Affordable Housing Programs
- Commercial Rehabilitation Programs
- Economic Development Business Attraction and Marketing Programs
Capital Improvement Projects
Montclair currently had five redevelopment project areas.