Director's Corner, Spring 2012

Pat Eklund, Mayor pro Tem, city of Novato and Your Representative on the League Board of Directors

April 18, 2012

Early February, the League Board of Directors met and created a special task force to develop a strategy that identifies needed fixes to AB X1 26, the bill that mandated the dissolution of our Redevelopment Agencies and liquidation of our assets.  The Task Force also was asked to develop short and long-term strategies for providing cities with additional and stronger economic development tools.



After three meetings, the Next Generation of Economic Development Tools Task Force, compiled their ideas which were vetted in March at the Housing, Community and Economic and Revenue and Taxation Policy Committee in Ontario. 

The short term ideas focused on pursuing and supporting legislation that cleans up many of the holes and ambiguities in AB X1 26 and clarifies many of the real challenges we are facing with asset management, brownfields, unspent bond proceeds and miscellaneous administrative issues associated with the oversight committees.  The Task Force also recommended pursuing legislation to expand options for increasing the flexibility of using Infrastructure Finance Districts to fund economic development and to continue researching options for tax increment financing, assessment districts, economic development corporations that would allow cities to develop infrastructure, , pursue economic development, remove blight, assemble land and develop affordable housing.

The long term ideas focused on drafting concept legislation to authorize the State, via the State Infrastructure Bank or other entities, to support full tax increment financing (including access to the school share of the increment) for projects consistent with state priorities (e.g. military base closure, affordable housing, and projects consistent with SB 375) and projects that attract higher wage employers to the State of California.  Lastly, the task force recommended that we encourage the development and adoption of a State Economic Development Strategy with state and local fiscal incentives for the creation of urban revitalization and sustainable development.

While we continue to thoroughly discuss these ideas, the Board of Directors is slated to adopt the recommendations at our next Board Meeting at the end of April in Sacramento.  If you would like to provide comments or suggestions, please review the Task Force Report ( and submit your ideas to us.

The board discussed other important matters including pending state and federal legislation and pension reform efforts by the state legislature and the Governor.

Lastly, I want to announce that the Mayors and Council Members Department has formed a task force to review and recommend changes to our bylaws.  Since it has been over a decade since our bylaws were first developed and adopted by the membership in September 2001, there are some areas that need to be cleaned up and clarified to ensure effective operation of our Department.  I have been asked by our Department President, Bob Johnson, Council Member, City of Lodi to chair this effort.  Others members of the task force include Jim Goodhart, First Vice President of the Department and Council Member, City of Palos Verdes Estates, Bob Cox, Council Member, City of Cloverdale, Pat Landreth, Mayor, City of Colusa, Marty Simonoff, former League Board Member and current Council Member with the City of Brea and Sam Spagnolo, Mayor Pro Tem, City of Rancho Cucamonga. 

If you would like more information on this report, the League Board of Directors or the bylaws update, feel free to email me at: or call me at home 415-883-9116.

We look forward to seeing you at Legislative Action Days in Sacramento later in April.

Pat Eklund
Mayor pro Tem, city of Novato
Director, Mayors and Council Members Department and
      your representative on the League Board of Directors

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