Chula Vista’s Redevelopment/Successor Agency is not going out without a fight–a legal one. In April, a state-mandated oversight board convened to assume the task of dismantling the city’s former redevelopment agency and paying out remaining contractual obligations.
The oversight board began under a cloud of distrust for some residents because Mayor Cheryl Cox selected two members of the seven-member oversight board and her husband, County Supervisor Greg Cox, selected another two.
The Successor Agency had a familiar countenance. Mayor Cox appointed the former director of the redevelopment agency, Eric Crockett, and Janet Kluth who also worked for the agency. Supervisor Cox’s appointees, David Watson and Paul Desrochers had served as directors on the Chula Vista Redevelopment Corporation.
On April 27, the city of Chula Vista received a letter from the California Department of Finance. The letter found fault with some items the successor agency was trying to claim as enforceable obligations, including administrative salaries.
Subsequent exchanges between the city and the state appear not to have ameliorated the situation as the May 22 closed session meeting of the Chula Vista city council and Successor Agency to the Redevelopment Agency indicate the city is filing a suit against the state:
“The City Council Authorized the City Attorney to file an action on behalf of the Successor Agency against the State of California (Department of Finance (“DOF”) to enjoin DOF from taking Successor Agency ROPS [Recognized Obligation Payment] funds that DOF disapproves and distributing those funds to other taxing agencies.”
“Vote: Motion by Council member Ramirez/ Second by Council member Bensoussan; 4-1 with Council member Aguilar opposed.
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