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Prop 90 could cost local government billions, says Portola Valley council in resolution

Original post made by Richard Hine, editor of The Almanac, on Oct 27, 2006

The Portola Valley Town Council adopted the resolution below on Wednesday, Oct. 25, in a meeting at The Seqouias retirement community in Portola Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 2280 - 2006

WHEREAS, Proposition 90 is an initiative on the November 2006 ballot that purports to be about eminent domain reform, but would cost state and local governments billions and undermine Portola Valley’s ability to plan for and protect the community; and
WHEREAS, Proposition 90 would allow individuals to sue claiming a new law or regulation has impacted the value of their property or business, and would cost taxpayers millions in litigation fees; and
WHEREAS, Proposition 90 would severely restrict the ability of voters and local and state agencies to enforce laws that protect the coastline, preserve open space and farmland, protect air and water quality, and protect environmentally sensitive areas; and
WHEREAS, Proposition 90 would discourage cities and towns from enacting new consumer protection and criminal laws, because the initiative could require new taxpayer payouts for laws protecting consumers from identity theft, fraud and other crimes if the offending business claims that such laws harm their business; and
WHEREAS, Proposition 90 would prevent local governments from acquiring property for the purpose of cleaning up blight, eliminating slum lords, building affordable housing and potentially providing public facilities operated by private for-profit agencies; and
WHEREAS, if local and state agencies had to spend billions of dollars defending against lawsuits each time they enacted public interest measures, such spending would dramatically reduce resources available for local police and fire protection, emergency response and other local services; and
WHEREAS, after a similar law was passed in Oregon, more than 2,200 claims were filed against the state, seeking over $5 billion in payments that Oregon taxpayers could ultimately have to pay; and
WHEREAS, the League of California Cities and the California Redevelopment Association are strongly opposed to Proposition 90, because they believe it is misleading to say that it resolves eminent domain concerns, when ultimately it goes far beyond eminent domain and will enact constitutional amendments that will cost taxpayers billions in added costs, harm the environment, and hurt California cities’ ability to protect neighborhoods; and
NOW, THEREFORE, the Council of the Town of Portola Valley does RESOLVE as follows;
SECTION 1. The Town Council hereby expresses its strong concern regarding the impact on our Town in the future if Proposition 90 passes.
SECTION 2. The Town Council and staff are authorized to provide impartial informational materials on the initiative as may be lawfully provided by the Town’s representatives. No public funds shall be used to campaign for or against the initiative.
SECTION 3. The residents of the Town of Portola Valley are encouraged to become well informed on the initiative and its possible impacts.
PASSED AND ADOPTED this 25th day of October, 2006.



Town Clerk


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