This came over the transom a little while ago from Anaheim Councilwoman Kris Murray:
Statement by Council Member Kris Murray on passage of GardenWalk Hotels economic assistance agreements
Anaheim–The Anaheim City Council has voted to approve the GardenWalk Hotels economic assistance program, in a move expected to generate nearly $500 million in new city revenues according to city staff.
Council Member Kris Murray gave the following statement:
“This is a win-win for our city.
This program increases city revenues without raising taxes, which allows us to fund neighborhood programs like parks and libraries, along with our vital police and fire services. And no general revenue dollars will ever be spent on this project.
This ensures that Anaheim remains a tourism leader and continues attracting conventions, sporting events and entertainment which draw visitors to our beautiful city and its shops, restaurants and hotels. The result will be expanded economic activity for local businesses, more jobs for residents and more general revenue dollars to fund city services and neighborhood needs.
This is a public-private partnership aimed at expanding Anaheim’s tourism industry by building high-quality hotels creating 1,300 permanent local jobs and as many as 3,000 skilled jobs during construction.
City staff estimate the program will generate nearly $500 million in new revenue over the life of the agreement. At the end of the agreement, the project should produce $25 million in annual tax revenue for as long as the hotels are open and successful.
Opponents have attempted to say this program “gives away” city funds, when in fact no general revenue dollars will ever be paid to the project owners. The program is structured to allow the project owners to pay a reduced amount in city taxes once the hotels are up and running. And the tax reduction is capped at $158 million over twenty years.
This program has also been called unfair because it supposedly benefits only one group. In fact, the program has always been open to property owners who want to expand in Anaheim’s vital tourism areas. Tonight, I also called for an ordinance creating a standing economic development program in our city.”
Councilwoman Murray and her colleagues should be congratulated for their leadership last night
Despite Mayor Tait’s opposition, along with a few anti-police activists and “professional blogger” Cynthia Ward , I watched as our council put the residents and taxpayers of Anaheim first.
The most surprising moment of the night for me – when Mayor Tait was forced to admit that his business does work for hotels in Garden Grove – wow.
Regarding your anti-police activist comment: This Hispanic fellow (German Santos) was so “anti-police” that I was risking my hide as an embedded systems hardware/software engineer in Bogota, Colombia providing surveillance tools for the police (amongst others) on behalf of an American company owned by 2 white male American patriots. You know “WW2 German prisoner of war / Rockwell International chief engineers for the GPS project” types. In other words like all us typical Hispanic gang members.
Great job Councilwomen Murray with a win for all hotels in Anaheim. Tait doesn’t get it. He doesn’t want to give one specific developer a tax break because he says it is not fair to all hotels that must pay the tax. Huh?
The city needs to look at this forward thinking logic so that any other hotel built in Anaheim in the future should also not have to pay the taxs also. If existing hotels don’t like it, they can just tear down their hotel and build a new one and not pay the tax. Pretty Simple.
Tait talks about the city being shorted on $158 mil in tax revenue is total bunk. That’s just crazy. The money is going to one developer who can spend it however he wants. Think about it… Would you gather give the money to one developer or to a city who would use it on something useless.
Tom Tait does get it. He knows, absolutely and certainly, that this action by City Council will benefit the city. The thing is, Mayor Tait doesn’t believe that it’s the role of government to “interfere” in the market to benefit the residents of the city. You will notice that he calls for more money to be spent on services, but doesn’t say anything about how to raise that additional revenue. Tom Tait wants to starve the beast that is government, and he’s willing to use and be used by the far left to achieve that end.
This is why the moderates from both sides have been able to come together on this issue, while the extremes have made strange bedfellows. This agreement is good for the general fund, which will enable the city to provide more services, and it is good for the business community, specifically Bill O’Connell, GardenWalk and the Resort more generally.
Quite simply, Tom Tait doesn’t believe there is any appropriate role for government in our lives. He wants to see the whole apparatus burn to the ground, and he’s in a position to do it from the inside. And he’s been doing a fabulous job of it over the past year.
Steve Law i like your post. But would also clarify one of your points.
You say that a developer may spend the tax rebate “any way he wants.”
Well that is not true.
The requirement in the city agreement is that he uses that money (paid in rebate each year he is in operation) to finance the construction of the hotel.
That is why the city staff said that the net present value (NPV) of the $158m was $72m. He needs that $72m to add to the other $200m in financing to build his hotel in the first place.
I think people think that this economic incentive is a windfall to this developer. But instead it is funds that he needs to finance the construction of the hotel in the first place.
I totally agree”Stand Up”. By giving the money to the developer to finance the construction, he basically can improve his cash flow and can indirectly use as he wishes to maintain a profitable investment. I just don’t think the city should stop with helping out with just this hotel project… let’s do a whole bunch more like it. Can you imagine the benefit to the city if we finance the construction on several more hotels and surrounding businesses? It would be great for Anaheim!
I agree. It is a good example of a public private partnership. I also believe that projects like these in other area of our city could benefit as well.
Councilwoman Lucille Kring called for a city ordinance to come back to council to extend this program to all hoteliers. Mayor Tait said he would be supportive – lets hope that’s true and the city can move forward with a united council.
I haven’t had a chance to watch the video of the council meeting, was Councilwoman Kring’s proposal to provide a TOT rebate to existing hotels?
Council member Kring called for the ordinance to come back to provide the same terms for those seeking to build or renovate …