"Until we get more details, we are a little bit unsure of how to proceed," said Jaymie Bradford, director of San Diego's Intergovernmental Relations Department, during a January 31 presentation to the Redevelopment Agency Ad-Hoc Committee.
The purpose of the meeting was to update the ad-hoc committee, made up of councilmembers Todd Gloria, Marti Emerald, David Alvarez, and Kevin Faulconer (who was absent), on Governor Jerry Brown's proposal to eliminate local redevelopment agencies by July 1 of this year.
Brown's proposal would result in a $5 billion takeaway from redevelopment agencies statewide. The funds would then be deposited into state coffers for spending on programs such as Medi-Cal.
In response to the governor's plan, cities across the state are rushing to approve new redevelopment projects before any legislation is signed into law.
San Diego's redevelopment agency and its two nonprofit public corporations, CCDC and SEDC, are trying to do the same.
During the meeting, CCDC vice president Frank Alessi informed the committee members that CCDC was at work readying four major projects for downtown: phase one of the North Embarcadero Visionary Plan, the Horton Plaza park, a new Bayside fire station, and a downtown homeless shelter.
"We are working on those four projects. Those will be coming to you hopefully by March 1," Alessi said.
Janice Weinrick, deputy executive director for the city's redevelopment agency, also updated the committee on work at the agency. Weinrick told committee members that her office is now identifying projects for the city's 16 other redevelopment project areas.
"For every one of the project areas, we have draft lists that we are trying to finalize," said Weinrick. "We are doing detailed cash flow on every project area to see how much money can be put into an account, to see which projects can be funded. We have a master list that is 36 pages long."
Not all of those in the crowd were happy to hear that the redevelopment agency was in control of that master list.
Jim Varnadore, chair of the City Heights Planning Group, was the only member of the public to comment.
"I was not prepared to hear that the redevelopment agency was going to decide which projects to fund and which not to fund. Do it our way, please."