The Redevelopment Blob Is Growing

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The Sacramento Bee's Capital Alert site is pointing out a trend that has been ignored in the debate over Gov. Jerry Brown's plans to eliminate redevelopment agencies.

That point is: the problem with redevelopment is not merely that such agencies gobble up a slice of property taxes that could (and, it says here, should) be going to schools. It's that the slice of that pie is growing. Fast.

The Bee cites a controller's report showing that the $5.7 billion in property taxes that redevelopment agencies took in 2008-09 is THREE TIMES the amount they took a decade earlier.

This statistic alone makes the case for Brown's proposal stronger. He's not merely trying to grab money to help schools and balance the budget. Eliminating redevelopment agencies is a wait of stopping a growing blob that's swallowing up too much of the tax base -- without producing significant, measurable gains in jobs and the economy.

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