Galloway Was For “Tax Giveaways” Before She Was Against Them
Posted by HBK on September 13, 2012
As others here have noted, Anaheim politics nowadays makes for strange bedfellows and alliances.
Anaheim Councilwoman Lorri Galloway has been the toughest critic of the city’s deal with the GardenWalk project, under which Anaheim rebates 80% of the hotel project’s transient occupancy tax revenue back to the two hotels for 15 years. This is larger than the 50-50 TOT splits the city has done in the past with resort district hotels.
Galloway has denounced the GardenWalk deal as a “tax giveaway” and declares this is not “a good time to give $158 million of taxpayer money away to one developer.”
A few years ago, she thought it was a good idea to give tax money to a developer, far in excess of normal standards. This excerpt from a October 2008 post on a now-dormant blog called “No On Galloway” explains how when it came to an Anaheim affordable housing project called the Elm Street Commons, a different view of developer subsidies prevailed:
“It seems the funding on this project got a little creative. On November 28, 2006, SADI, the developer for Elm Street Commons, came to City Council to have their standard DDA approved through the Housing Authority. Standard practice in Anaheim is to give the developer money, to be paid back over time, 85% to the City, and the developer keep 15% as profit. The 85% is then recycled into more housing projects, which keeps Anaheim building apartments for the working poor. Whether you agree with building subsidized housing or not, it is an efficient system. In the development of the Elm Street Commons, the City offered many millions of dollars in direct funding, plus incentives added later such as a sewer project the developer decided the City should do. Rather than approve the otherwise ordinary deal, now-convicted-felon Richard Chavez pulled the development from the Consent Calendar, allowing discussion. In the end, the City Council, led by Chavez and backed by Lorri Galloway, changed the condition of the agreement, bumping the developer’s profit from the standard 15% to a whopping and unprecedented 50% profit for a private corporation!!”
Increasing the traditional 50-50 TOT split to 80-20 for one developer is a “tax giveaway.” But increasing the city-funded profit margin from 15% to 50% for another developer is legitimate?
The post continues:
“Why would Lorri Galloway take money from the very people she claims to champion? Perhaps the answer is in her Council statement, as she looked at the developer and admonished him, “I hope you acknowledge how much Council has been supportive of you.”
“Well the developers at Elm Street Commons sure did remember to acknowledge that 35% jump in their profits, funded by robbing Anaheim’s working poor. Again funneling money through PAC filings with Treasurer Kinde Durkee, who is frequently under investigation by the FPPC, a donation of $15,000 was made by Elm Street, which funded the Clear Channel billboards Lorri has all over the City. They also underwrote a large mailing, and the graphic arts for the mail piece.”
Food for thought.