1. RDA tax increment: Joyce Powers claims it does not raise taxes. Yes it does in an indirect way. The theory is that RDA encourages development that increases property taxes--via increase value of improved property;debt is incurred to finance projects, such as the Town Center, in the anticipation that the improved property will generate more value in tax assessment(the increased value of the property) or generate sales taxes.
If the City incurred debt of $100,000, the improvement should generate enough new revenues to pay the debt and administration(planning, environmental studies and management staff of the project and provide a tax increment-more property tax revenues.
The problem is that if any new property taxes are produced they can only go back to the RDA.
Thus, in our City of Grand Terrace, the general fund has had to borrow from the RDA. Why, because any increase in property taxes goes to them whether they can prove their projects generated any new tax revenues or not. RDA is cash rich, the City cash poor.
Many studies, that can be found on the internet from very credible sources, such as the Public Policy Institute, find that RDA's do not increase revenues. Increased real estate values produced the increased tax revenues. So obviously, the the housing bubble has deflated that growth and the house of cards if falling.
For all the efforts of the City of Grand Terrace, sales taxes are down almost 12 percent. The general fund is in a deficit. RDA has tons of money, but it is designated to pay for debt or enter into commercial ventures best left to market forces and private enterprise.
Read more at http://www.crrsj.com/references/morrreport.php