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In what could be a dramatic change to San Diego’s financial future, new Gov. Jerry Brown is proposing eliminating redevelopment agencies statewide as part of his budget package. The Sacramento Bee reports this morning:

In a major reduction, Brown would wipe out hundreds of local redevelopment agencies, which use property taxes to spur projects in blighted areas. State leaders in 2009-10 took $1.7 billion from redevelopment agencies, though voters in November approved a ballot initiative, Proposition 22, that presumably blocks such transfers in the future.

Brown wants to eliminate redevelopment agencies altogether; it is not clear whether that would require voter approval. He intends to use the money to offset state budget costs for one year and then give the money to counties and schools thereafter.

“Frankly, nothing would surprise me since it seems like we’ve been everyone’s target,” said John Shirey, executive director of the California Redevelopment Association. “Naturally, we would fight that, and we think the voters were very clear in their passage of Proposition 22 … that local money needs to stay local and the state needs to find its own solutions to state problems.”

The Bee provided no details on Brown’s proposal and had no comment from Brown aides.

But if Brown’s proposal is as wide-ranging as it seems, it would throw funding for nearly every major San Diego project in doubt. Downtown redevelopment dollars are key for a proposed Chargers stadium, Convention Center expansion and already are being used for the new schoobrary.

We’ll try to find out more on this today. A hat tip to former VOSDer Vlad Kogan for alerting me to the story.

Please contact Liam Dillon directly at liam.dillon@voiceofsandiego.org or 619.550.5663 and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/dillonliam.

Liam Dillon

Liam Dillon was formerly a senior reporter and assistant editor for Voice of San Diego. He led VOSD’s investigations and wrote about how regular people...

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