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Judge Okays Raid On Cities Redevelopment Funds

khts_budgetA Superior Court judge in Sacramento gave Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger the right to raid city coffers to balance the state budget, resulting in a $2 billion loss from local redevelopment funding.

The City of Santa Clarita stands to lose $1.1 million of this year's redevelopment funding and $233,000 in the 2010-2011 fiscal year.

 

City spokeswoman Gail Ortiz said that because of the uncertainty of the governor's initial proposal and the likelihood of a decision such as this, those funds had not been allocated or dedicated to specific projects.

During last year's budget negotiations, the governor indicated his intention to take the redevelopment funding and transfer it to school operations.  The California Redevelopment Association has filed an appeal on the grounds that the taking is unconstitutional.

The funds must be transferred by May 10.

Ortiz said that an initiative that qualified for the November ballot, the Local Taxpayer, Public Safety and Transportation Protection Act, driven by the League of California Cities, would protect cities from future raids on their budgets. More than a million signatures in support of this initiative were recently turned in to the Secretary of State's office and are in the verification process.