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Couple of points:
We’ve had a lot of response to our editorial today and I wanted to touch on a few points.
- First, a wise reader sent this comment this morning:
Well written editorial today. I just had one quibble; you wrote:
Some might decry that only a city with misplaced values and skewed priorities would choose to pay for a baseball field over a library. Unfortunately for them, that choice was made several years ago by city leaders who either declined to acknowledge that they were doing so, or were too preoccupied with their dreams of sitting in the skyboxes to notice what they were doing.
My quibble is that the voters approved the ballpark project; the “decision” was not made by “city leaders.” From my perspective, the voters were fully informed about the financing, and that the payment for the bonds would come from the general fund; Proposition C was clear about that.
That’s a great point. Voters did make the choice. But I don’t know if saying that the money will come from the general fund successfully communicated that it meant that something, someday, will have to be sacrificed.
- Secondly, a few readers wanted to remind us that CCDC is not, at all, some kind of separate “rogue” entity from the city. Of course not. CCDC is hardly more than another department of the city’s Redevelopment Agency — which, of course, is the City Council.
In fact, the mayor is the executive director of the Redevelopment Agency.
It’s the City Council that has power over CCDC. And the downtown redevelopment group’s spending priorities should reflect not just on their directors and leaders but on the whole City Council. In other words, the City Council has the power not just to try to persuade CCDC to take over payments of Petco Park, but to actually make the switch itself.
If it doesn’t make that switch, and if we have a problem with the way CCDC spends its money, we should look not necessarily at them, but at the City Council.