AUDITOR-CONTROLLER AWARDS IRVINE MAYOR AND TWO COUNCIL MEMBERS THE TAXPAYER WATCHDOG AWARD FOR SAVING TAXPAYERS CLOSE TO $50 MILLION
June 8, 2017 – Today, Orange County Auditor-Controller Eric H. Woolery awarded the Mayor of Irvine and two Irvine City Council Members with the honor of Taxpayer Watchdog for their role in saving the city of Irvine taxpayers close to $50 million. Earlier this month, Mayor Donald P. Wagner and Councilwomen Christina L. Shea and Melissa Fox voted to express the intent of the City of Irvine to enter a land swap with FivePoint Communities for an Orange County Veterans’ Cemetery. This will be the first Veterans’ Cemetery in Orange County.
The original site proposed for the cemetery would require at least $30 million of Irvine taxpayer funds for the costs for demolition of numerous buildings and for toxic cleanup, and an additional $40 million in state and federal grants. The new site previously served as a commercial strawberry field operation, which does not require any remediation to become public use land. The new site is close to the 5/405 freeway interchange, making it much more accessible to families visiting their loved ones. Continue reading