Riversiders, my apologies for not blogging recently (my last blog was June 26th)… but here we go- lots of information to share with you!
Pledged Assets in the Public Realm- Update from my May 4th blog: With the Council’s approval of the refinancing of our 2003 Certificates of Participation on July 24th, along with the recent Convention Center financing, the following City assets were removed from the list of city facilities pledged as security:
- The Corporation Yard
- Parking Garages 1, 2 and 3
- The Airport Fire Station
- The Downtown Library
- The Airport Clear-Zone land
I appreciate the leadership on this issue from our City Council and I’m proud of the hard work put in on this by our Finance Division staff. Well done!
Redevelopment Update: I mentioned this during a recent Council meeting, but it really deserves to be repeated… AB 1X 26 and AB 1484 (the original bill that ended Redevelopment Agencies and the recently adopted State Budget Trailer bill making changes to the implementation of AB 1X 26) called for a “July True-Up Process” regarding what the State Department of Finance believed were incorrect allocations to affected taxing entities due to errors on “Recognized Obligation Payment Schedules” (see my May 31st blog for additional information on these Recognized Obligation Payment Schedules or ROPS). I am happy to report that the City of Riverside was advised by the Riverside County Auditor-Controller (CAO) that we did not owe any money- this is pretty significant for a couple of reasons: 1) it validates the work that we have done to correctly implement the state’s guidelines, and 2) look at the numbers from other jurisdictions as reported the San Francisco Chronicle (http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/State-duns-cities-for-millions-of-dollars-3732550.php) with cities receiving bills for millions of dollars from their local CAOs.
Reductions in staffing: During the Council meeting yesterday (7/24/12), one our frequent commenters mentioned that she had heard that there were layoffs in Code Enforcement here in the City of Riverside. While the issue of layoffs is always painful for all individuals involved, I do think it is good to know that we are attempting to be both fiscally responsible as well as sensitive to the needs of our staff members and our community. A layoff did occur- why? Because of the combining of Community Development and the Development Departments there was an over-staffing of certain clerical positions, which resulted in one layoff notice. The affected employee (who was working in the Code Enforcement Division) was able to exercise bumping rights to a previously held position in other department of the city. The bottom line: no Code Enforcement Officers (who are the field staff most visible to our community) were laid off, one important and productive employee in Code Enforcement was required to exercise bumping rights to a lower position in another department, and Community Development continued their work to “right size” the organization so that revenue more closely matches expenditures.
Humphrey Bogart Film Series at the Fox Theater: Looking for something to do this summer? Check out the Bogart Film Series at the Fox! “The Maltese Falcon” will show on 7/27, “The Treasure of the Sierra Madre” shows on August 3rd, and “The Big Sleep” will finish the series on 8/10. This is a great opportunity to view high quality, historic films in a setting like no other.