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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Another Clackistani burg fights "urban renewal" scams

They'll be voting on some beneficial changes down in Oregon City in November: Put all "urban renewal" bonds up for an automatic vote before the money is borrowed. If only Portland had had such a rule, it might have had a viable financial future. Too late now.

Let's hope the Oregon City measure also requires public votes on "interim letter of credit" draws. This is how Portland and other public entities make public scrutiny of "urban renewal" and similar boondoggles virtually impossible. They quietly borrow mega-millions pursuant to shadowy lines of credit that rarely see the light of day. By the time they resolve to issue permanent bonds, they've already spent the money and are on the hook to the banks on the lines of credit, which come due in short order. Anybody challenging the permanent bonds would essentially put the city into default on the lines of credit, because there's no other way to pay them off.

Comments (7)

"Anybody challenging the permanent bonds would essentially put the city into default on the lines of credit, because there's no other way to pay them off."

IMHO, forcing a default on a LOC (line of credit) loan by blocking a subsequent bond issue is exactly the medicine which both the Oregon government entities and the favored banks ( usually, for PDX its Bank of America) need.

Defaults by Oregon municipalities are going to happen. Better it happens sooner than later.

You could never convince a majority of the voters of that.

Baby steps, Baby steps.

The first thing we need to do is inform the sheeple that UR gets a bigger cut from property taxes than our schools.

I'm guessing the awareness of that is less than 30%

Lake Oswego passed the Foothills Framework Plan last week by a 4-3 vote.

It's possibly the worst UR plan I've ever seen.
A $20 million gift to Homer.
It seeks to borrow with interim financing $7.5 million which staff admits they have no idea how it will be paid.
The city justifies the UR plan in part with babble about providing affordable housing.
But there is no money in the plan for affordable housing which their expert stated would be required. Staff then said if money was
committed to affordable housing the UR plan they just called "feasible" would blow up.
Then there is the sewage treatment plant. Portland notified LO they would not participate in any mitigation needs and LO said they had no money in the plan for any of the known problems the plant represents.
Staff and city council touted the sustainability objectives in the plan including an eco-district heating/cooling plant.
Yet here again there is no money in the plan for any of it.

Some school board member running for city council gave a moronic praise for the plan as a means to re-populate their schools. A bunch of families are going to move into apartment bunkers in LO?

It goes on and on with stupidity that seems to be getting worse.

Oh, the details of running a REAL city and not playing SimCity...

I like Nonny's suggestion. Just get the crap out of the way. Default, let's impose the national tax hike and spending cuts. Yes, it'll be a tough couple of years. But we'll get through it. Better now than down the road.

Get out of the way.

LO councilor Jeff Gudman made a motion to approve the Foothills
Framework Plan with all of it's accommodating code and zoning amendments but with all of the UR- Tax Increment Financing removed. And to then let developers make proposals with their own money.

It was seconded but voted down 4-3.

Mayor Hoffman, Councilor Moncreif, Councilor Tierney and Councilor Jordon are as foolish as the Sam Rand regime.

It is outrageous that LO gave the city code book to Homer and pals to change the. Ode to suit a Foothills development as they needed. This puts the developers in the driver's seat and not just simply a partner in a public-private partnership.

Oregon City has it right, but as to protecting themselves against all the ways their city council can screw them behind their backs... It probably can't be done. We are paying people to work all day to think of ways to thwart any barrier the citizens erect. I agree - cut off the supply of money. Let it hurt for awhile. Parasites cannot survive without a live host.

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