And, that is just what the majority of Thousand Oaks City Council members decided to do on Tuesday night (3-10). They approved a $6.6 million loan to the auto dealers group, with a payout of 30 years and an interest rate of 3%. (The Council vote was 3-1, with Claudia Bill-de la Pena voting against it and Dennis Gillette absent.)
This is according to an article in the VC Star on 3-10. The article also said the loan is plus $2 million that was already promised by T.O.’s Redevelopment Agency, which also consists of the City Council members.
For background, the California legislature is expected to vote any time now, on legislation that would do away with all the redevelopment agencies in the state, so like there was a rush to get the $6.6 million committed to the auto dealers before the vote.
A big deal is that this item was a Consent Item on the agenda, which is supposed to be only for routine business that does not need discussion. It is a huge understatement for me to say that I DO NOT believe this is an appropriate consent item! And, how about the long term of 30 years, at a fixed rate of 3%? Who wouldn’t want a great loan like that? After all, we are in a period of extremely low interest rate loans, and I am sure no one expects that to last for 30 years!
What do you think? One thing to remember is that money used for redevelopment comes from funds that could be used for basic services, like police and fire service and education. But, hey, let’s put it aside for the auto dealers to upgrade parking and streets instead! To read the VC Star article by Teresa Rochester, go to: http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/mar/09/to-council-approves-funding-agreement-with-auto/