GRAPHIC: The fiscal impacts of developing Alameda Point

GRAPHIC: The fiscal impacts of developing Alameda Point

Michele Ellson


Richard Bangert's picture
Submitted by Richard Bangert on Fri, Dec 13, 2013

"If property taxes are leveraged to fund infrastructure," we will lose money. Since the working assumption has been that we will need some sort of special redevelopment-type legislation to help fund infrastructure (now that redevelopment agencies no longer exist), aren't we facing a big fiscal dilemma? The Fiscal Neutrality Ordinance would seem to prohibit going in the hole, regardless of good intentions.

Also, the $2.8 million revenue that is projected at total buildout is, to say the least, underwhelming. Given the size of Alameda Point and its location, you would think the city would come out better financially than $2.8 million annual revenue contribution to the city after 30 years of building. "Fiscal bonanza" is not going to be one of the goals of developing Alameda Point, if anyone had any illusions. The goal will be to convert the base into a fully functioning part of Alameda.

Submitted by Michele Ellson on Fri, Dec 13, 2013

Hey Richard - appreciate your comment. One thing I should mention about the report is that it assumes that if the city does set up an infrastructure and facilities district (which would allow them to bond against future property taxes to pay for roads, utilities etc) it's assumed they would have residents and businesses pay extra assessments to cover the losses, similar to what residents and businesses at Alameda Landing will likely pay to fund services and infrastructure there.

Submitted by David (not verified) on Fri, Dec 13, 2013

Am I the only one who wonders why the local media - Robert Gammon over at the Express, and now Michele, here - is so willing to tell the "Bring back redevelopment, at the expense of our schools!" story on behalf of our civic leaders and their patrons? (Yes, it's been shown, as Governor Brown said - redevelopment/tax increment financing diverts money from K-12 schools to redevelopment projects.)

If anything, what this study proves is what I've been saying for years - it's folly to expect that building housing is the financial bonanza that proponents say it is.

It's clear that developing for sales tax revenue - preferably B2B sales tax revenue (Peet's Coffee) over B2C retail sales tax revenue (Target) - provides more revenue for city coffers.

Something that makes more sense than bringing back redevelopment is the Mello Roos Community Financing Districts that council just approved for Alameda Landing - this puts the cost of the development on to the people that will directly use it and benefit for it.

As an Alameda resident, that approach is better for me, than redevelopment, which diverts money from K-12 schools, which I have to then replenish in the form of parcel taxes, so that infrastructure at alameda point used by new residents and businesses there - which don't directly benefit me - can be built.

Submitted by Michele Ellson on Fri, Dec 13, 2013

Hi David,

To be clear, I am not advocating a position on redevelopment in any of the pieces I've written about it. I am simply reporting on the city's desire and efforts to try to hang on to or win restoration of the power to bond against future property taxes for infrastructure, and leaving it to the readers to judge the pros or cons of those efforts.

Submitted by David (not verified) on Fri, Dec 13, 2013

Let's call it for what it is:

"...unless state lawmakers allow the city to leverage future property taxes to build roads, flood protection measures and utilities. "

Means Tax Increment Financing, which is the basic build-now, pay-later financing mechanism behind California redevelopment law, which Jerry Brown abolished in 2011 in favor of returning some $10 billion per year in California property taxes back to K-12 schools.

Submitted by Michele Ellson on Fri, Dec 13, 2013

Hi David: That's precisely what they are seeking, the ability to leverage future tax dollars to pay for infrastructure.

Submitted by Dave (not verified) on Fri, Dec 13, 2013

Business owners in San Leandro will see a new assessment, "tax" on their County tax bill next quarter. With the help of, New City America a consulting firm that is based out of San Diego, the same city that our then new city Manager hailed from. David Johnson, the president of San Leandro's Chamber of commence, Cynthia Batteburg, the Head Bureaucrat in San Leeandro, and Marco Li Mandri, President of New City America, San Leandro is the first city to impose a assessment "TAX" on business Downtown for the next 20 years. Got to go more to come soon. Look up Plan Bay Area and you will see what they plan to do to private property.