Irvine mayor Don Wagner often likes to tout his conservative credentials, yet a new change he is proposing to the Irvine Cit Charter would effectivey silence “special interest groups” from using referendums to change policy while giving a green light to developers — who fund the council majority campaigns.
Here’s language from Wagner’s memo to the city council obtained by TheLiberalOC:
*The second City Charter Amendment would restrict special interest groups from manipulating the electorate to impose additional requirements on approved development projects that provide the City with specified fiscal benefits.*
The green light would be for developements that offer 15% ROI on costs, but once done, there’s no provision for punishment if the project loses money or comes in uner 15%. Aditionally, who defines “special interest groups.” Would the OC Veteran’s Cementery and Memorial Park group be a special interest group? The description fits.
This change is squarely targeted at the Irvine slow growth initiative an is aimd at raising money — from developers with deep pockets — for campaigns against Karen Jaffe’s referendum (which has yet to qualify for the ballot) and to raise money to preserve the developer’s investment in the council majority’s land swap decision.
This isn’t freedom that Wagner so often preaches. This is an affront ot small “d” democracy.
The PDF of what Wagner proposes won’t load for me, but one chnage he wants makes it harder to raise taxes (what a surprise). The other harms the public while benefiting developers. The council majority has no shame.