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Save Anaheim Blog reports Anaheim GardenWalk deal is busted for now

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BREAKING NEWS: $158 million GardenWalk giveaway VOID

The Superior Court of CA has found that The City of Anaheim violated the Brown act by failing to properly notice the public regarding the giveaway of $158 million in public funds. The irresponsible decision by Kris Murray, Gail Eastman, and Harry Sidhu has been overturned and the deal is now void. Justice prevails.

Further drivel from Pringle sycophant Matt “Jerbal” Cunningham can be found here: http://anaheimblog.net/2012/12/10/breaking-gardenwalk-coming-back-to-the-city-council-for-a-vote/.  And here’s the Register’s coverage:  Judge voids Anaheim’s $158 million tax deal.

GardenWalk’s been a bad bet since 2009:  Mall defaults on $210 million loan.  Recently re-elected Anaheim Councilmember Lucille Kring owned a wine bar in the mall in 2010 — if she still owns the business, she’d surely need to recuse herself on any re-vote for the $158 million TOT (Transient Occupancy Tax) giveaway that was engineered by the Master of the Universe, Curt Pringle, and his City Council lackies pictured above, Murray, Sidhu and Eastman.  Sidhu’s been termed out and replaced by Jordan Brandman, another Pringle boot licker, so one might speculate a re-vote would then be 3-1 with only Mayor Tom Tait doing the right thing by trying to stop a blatant payoff to the Mall’s developers, William O’Connell and Ajesh Patel.

The Flashreport‘s Jon Fleischman commented this evening on the controversy via Facebook:

This was an egregious give-away when it passed the first time. Tax policy should not be carved out to give subsidies to specific deals. That’s, in essence, a gift of taxpayer funds. In this case it would mean ongoing tax breaks for this hotel that other hotels in Anaheim do not get. Hopefully the two Republicans who voted for it last time will see the light, and not do so again.

Termed-out Councilmember Lorri Galloway also wrote in a Register piece that the Bed-tax giveaway sets a bad precedent for Anaheim.  She said “With the approval of this unprecedented sum of money, other developers will demand the same deal, existing hoteliers will cry foul, and a domino effect will cost the city much more than $158 million.”  Before being termed out, Galloway also voted against the $319 million streetcar debacle which some maps portrayed as having a stop on Katella Ave. for the Mall.  GardenWalk is in a superb location, directly across Katella from the Disney property that will eventually become their THIRD Park development in Anaheim.

We hope the renewed attention, fresh publicity would cause the MSM to fight a bit harder this time to stop the Giveaway, but Brandman wants in with the in crowd and will want to take care of his “mentor” Pringle (and SOAR and Disney) before his constituents.  Anaheim blogger Cynthia Ward can also be counted on to stay on top of the issue.

This is precisely the type of dirty, shyster politics that supports the need in Anaheim, the most populous city in Orange County, for a larger, more ethnically-represented, District-focused City Council — at least seven members (like HB, a much smaller city), or even nine (like Long Beach).  It’s obviously too easy for shady operators like Curt Pringle to dominate just a few members and do grimy deals like this in plain sight of the more honest citizens of Anaheim, a helpless Mayor and the media.

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3 Responses

  1. [...] we reported earlier today, a split vote on a tax subsidy worth up to $158 million to build two luxury hotels [...]

  2. [...] never.]  In short order, our three mainstream outlets were trumpeting the story, Art Pedroza was holding forth, and Matt Cunningham was out with his corporate-shill spin (which we won’t link to [...]

  3. [...] editorial folks have come to a completely sensible conclusion re. what’s become known as the “Anaheim Giveaway” — a $158 million THEFT of bed tax to a hotel developer — was inappropriate and should [...]