It’s the End of Redevelopment Agencies

Future civic projects in doubt after California Supreme Court upholds the state’s decision to abolish redevelopment agencies.


Projects on the scale of the Americana on Brand and the Glendale Galleria face an uncertain future as the city struggles with last week’s decision by the California Supreme Court to uphold the state’s abolishment of redevelopment agencies.

Redevelopment agencies across the state have been under attack from Sacramento since the inauguration of Gov. Jerry Brown as the state grasps at different options to help plug its record budget shortfall.

In a news statement released earlier this week, Mayor Laura Friedman was clear about how the court’s decision may be felt locally.

“The loss will impact our schools, parks, and businesses in the redevelopment area,” she stated. “It will negatively impact job creation in our community, the development of affordable housing and desperately needed new and sustainable sales tax revenue.”

Interim City Manager Yasmin Beers added that the projects brought to the city via its Redevelopment Agency have “created thousands of jobs and contributed substantial sales tax revenue for years to come.”

The decision by the state’s Supreme Court removes the last hurdle Sacramento had to surmount before formally dissolving the agencies and diverting their funds into education programs.

Though ailing over the decision, the city is conferring with its legal team to explore legislation that would alter the situation.

“The City of Glendale is confident that all is not lost,” said councilman and chairman of the Glendale Redevelopment Agency Rafi Manoukian. “We will continue to fight for economic vitality.”

The importance of the redevelopment agencies was stressed by the figure of $7.92 million cited in a recent City Council report detailing the revenue generated by redevelopment projects.

“As we enter a new year, we will develop options to ensure continued development of our infrastructure and preservation of our economic vitality in the region,” said Beers. “Our legislators who represent our communities will have no choice but to recognize the impacts we now face.”