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May 2019
Andrew Thomas
Westwood Village Improvement Association

Steve Snider
Downtown Oakland and Lake Merritt-Uptown District Associations
Vice President
Liz Studebaker
City of San Diego
Downtown Association of Santa Cruz
Austin Metoyer
Downtown Long Beach Alliance
At-Large Directors
Emilie Cameron 
Downtown Sacramento Partnership

Karin Flood
Union Square Business Improvement District

Kathy Hemmenway
Walnut Creek Downtown

Suzanne Holley
Downtown Center Business Improvement District (LA)
Steve Mulheim
Old Pasadena Management District

Chloe Verrey
San Jose Downtown Association
Immediate Past President
Steven Welliver
Downtown Santa Monica, Inc.
Arlington Business Partnership
Bixby Knolls Business Improvement Association
BLVD Association
Carmichael Improvement District, Inc.
Central City Association
City of Los Angeles, Office of the City Clerk
City of Monterey Park
City of Ontario
City of San Diego - Economic Development Dept.
City of San Jose - Office of Econ Dev
County of Santa Cruz - Office of Economic Development
Dinuba Chamber of Commerce
Downtown Association of Santa Cruz
Downtown Berkeley Association
Downtown Long Beach Alliance
Downtown Modesto Partnership
Downtown Oakland Association/ Lake Merritt Uptown District Association
Downtown Pomona Owners Association
Downtown Roseville Partnership
Downtown Sacramento Partnership
Downtown San Diego Partnership
Downtown Santa Barbara, Inc.
Downtown Santa Monica, Inc.
Downtown SLO
Downtown Vacaville BID
Downtown Ventura Partners
Downtown Visalians, Inc.
Figueroa Corridor Partnership
Gateway to LA Airport Business District
Gilroy Economic Development
Greater Broadway District
Hollywood Property Owners Alliance
Ironsmith, Inc.
Kono CBD
LA Downtown Industrial District BID
LA Fashion District BID
MJM Management Group
North Park Main Street
North Tahoe Business Association
Old Pasadena Management District 
ParkSmart, Inc.
Paso Robles Main Street Association
Playhouse District Association
Progressive Urban Management Associates, Inc.
R Street Sacramento Partnership
Riverside Downtown Partnership
San Jose Downtown Association
South Park BID
Sunnyvale Downtown
Telegraph BID
Temescal Telegraph BID
The River District
Times Square Alliance
Tracy City Center Association
Tulare Downtown Association
Walnut Creek Downtown Business Association
Westwood Village Improvement Association 
Wilshire Center Business Improvement District

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Andrew Thomas VP
There are approximately 274 business improvement districts, tourism districts, main street associations and other groups that have been formed to bring funded benefits to our downtown places in California. Their numbers have increased as the need for private interventions in our public spaces has become more urgent. In just the past eight years in Los Angeles, the number of BIDs has increased from 31 to 44. Our industry is certainly growing!

I was struck by a recent article in the San Francisco Chronicle about an area that could become the city’s second Green Benefit District (GBD). These districts operate in a similar fashion to our BIDs, except they are residential and mixed-use neighborhoods that are paying for additional maintenance and capital improvements.

GBDs are new to me, but I am not surprised to see the property-based assessment district model moving from our downtown places to residential communities. The intensity in which all of our public spaces are now used, in most cases due to increasing homeless populations, require resources that many of our cities simply cannot afford or spare. GBDs don’t yet exist in Los Angeles, but I believe they will in the near future.

I am occasionally asked by stakeholders to justify my district in Westwood. “My taxes should already pay for this” is the usual comment. My response is simply, “But they aren’t, and they won’t” and then we walk across my district’s boundary line to see dirty sidewalks, untrimmed trees, and no efforts to advocate or boost economic development. The contrast is stark.

Our districts, whether they are commercial or residential, seemingly now face a simple choice: investment or neglect. We can long for the days when our taxes funded maintenance and capital improvements, or instead, our communities can assert control. Based on the growth and expansion of our industry, I think the choice is clear. 

Andrew Thomas, CDA President
Executive Director
Westwood Village Improvement Association
The International Downtown Association’s Top Issues Council is addressing the opioid crisis in North America this year. The goal is to provide fellow IDA members with a finished product that will have meaningful tools and information to help address this critical issue in our communities. Please take a few minutes to complete the survey. The deadline to take the survey is May 31, 2019.

The information you provide will help us to better serve all of our colleagues in the urban district management industry.  
Governor’s “May Revise” Budget Proposal Released, Legislative Deadlines Fast Approaching 

Earlier this month Governor Newsom presented the 2019-20 State Budget “May Revise” – an updated spending plan reflecting new revenue projections based on current year tax receipts. Although there were initial concerns that revenues might be down given some indicators that the economy was slowing, corporate tax payments are $1 billion more than was previously estimated. The state now enjoys a $21.5 billion budget surplus. However, the Governor factors in uncertain economic forecasts and makes key investments to deal with inevitable economic downturns, including $15 billion in budget resiliency by investing in the “rainy day” reserves and paying down unfunded state pension liabilities.  

Specific to our policy priorities, the Governor spoke at length on the investments to build new housing and to address homelessness – both he considers to be a crisis in need of state intervention to properly tackle those issues. The Governor is proposing to spend $1 billion on efforts to address homelessness – an extra $150 million in grants for communities to build programs that help the homeless – including college programs, workforce grants, and mental health resources (see yellow highlights below).  The Governor also increases spending to address housing affordability with an additional $500 million to remove barriers for building mixed-income housing. The total housing investment is now $1.75 billion (see yellow highlights below).

This proposal kicks off the final weeks of budget negotiations as lawmakers consider passage of the 2019-20 State Budget which must be approved by June 15th. Full summary of the May Revise can be found here .

AB 1184 (Gloria, D-San Diego) OPPOSED 
The legislation would place a new mandate on all public agencies, including BIDs, to require storage of every transmitted email for at least 2 years. As written, the bill creates no new disclosures or exemptions of any records, but still requires all emails to be saved, regardless if the email is a public record or not. CDA believes there is no value to saving inconsequential emails – particularly if they will never require to be released. CDA is helping to lead a coalition of public agencies including the California Special Districts Association and the League of California Cities who oppose the bill. As was expected, the bill was approved by the Assembly Judiciary Committee and was approved by the Assembly Appropriations Committee. The bill now heads to the Assembly Floor. 

SB 518 (Wieckowski, D-Fremont) OPPOSED 
Working with a broad coalition including the California Special Districts Association, the League of California Cities, the California State Association of Counties, and the Rural County Representatives of California, CDA is opposed to the bill because it removes an important tool that reduces excessive litigation, court costs and attorney’s fees in disputes involving the CPRA. Specifically, the bill eliminate the utility of the “Section 998 settlement” offer in lawsuits between parties where a public agency is involved. A “Section 998 settlement” allows a plaintiff or defense to make an offer to settle a dispute before proceeding to trial. If an offer is presented but not accepted, the litigating party is not entitled to post-offer costs and attorney’s fees should a litigant fail to receive a better result than the offer made. The “Section 998 settlement” encourages settlements of disputes and avoids unnecessary attorney’s fees and court costs. The bill was approved by the Judiciary Committee and Appropriations Committee and now heads to the Senate Floor. 

SB 50 (Wiener, D-San Francisco) SUPPORT 
The bill would have allowed denser housing around public transit and job centers by prohibiting a local jurisdiction from restricting zoning to only single-family homes. SB 50 cleared a key policy committee after the author and the Chair of the Committee reached agreement to amend the bill to exempt cities of less than 600,000 residents as well providing protections for communities near the state’s coastline. It was assumed the amendments made to SB 50 will broaden the bill’s support in the Legislature, however, in a surprise move, the Senate Appropriations Committee “held” the bill in Committee and is considered a 2-year bill. Although SB 50 may be dead for the year, increasing supply of affordable housing is a hallmark issue for Governor Newsom and many policymakers and we could see additional movement on this issue later this year or through the budget process.  

Jason Bryant 
Bryant Government Affairs
May 2019 Legislative Update 
Could Bakersfield Become a California Boom Town?
Local entrepreneurs want to turn a boom in new businesses into an urban renaissance.

Homelessness isn’t Huge in this Part of L.A. — but it’s a Huge Campaign Issue
Los Angeles Times
In Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley neighborhoods of Chatsworth, Porter Ranch and Granada Hills are about as far...

Cowo Campus Leaving Midtown Sac for Downtown
Sacramento Business Journal
The coworking space Cowo Campus is relocating from midtown Sacramento to downtown — where brand owner Kuks Singh...

Will California Preempt City Control of Micromobility Companies?
If the California legislature passes AB 1112, cities can’t require companies like Bird, Lime, and Jump to limit numbers...

Why Some Tenant Groups Are Opposing California’s Density Bill
Next City
In hopes of addressing one of the most dire housing shortages of any state in the U.S., California State Sen. Scott Wiener...

Despite Missteps, High-Speed Rail Lines in 3 States Point to Progress
The efforts to add passenger rail service between major cities in California, Florida and Texas are all following different tracks...

16th Street Neighbors Fear Red Bus Lanes Drive Gentrification
San Francisco Examiner
Does the 22-Fillmore serve the Mission’s Latino community?

Urban Innovation and Circulation in San Diego
StreetsBlogUSA (podcast)
This week, we chat with Colin Parent, Executive Director of Circulate San Diego, an advocacy organization that promotes...

A Green New Deal? L.A. Now Has One
The New York Times
Mayor Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles unveiled an ambitious, wide-ranging “Green New Deal” for the nation’s second largest city.
What the Market Can Bear: Defining Limits to Inclusive Housing Requirements
Inclusivity requirements should be used with caution. Increasing the portion of below-market housing units tends to reduce...
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