The state housing agency on Friday urged the Anaheim city council to reject an overhaul development agreement for the Angel Stadium propertypotentially laying the foundations for a new showdown between the agency and the city.
In a statement, the agency said the revised deal – that cut the promised number of affordable housing units in the proposed Angel Stadium development of about 80% – shows the city and the angels the owner development company Arte Moreno “does not take our application and our affordable housing seriously.”
the California Department of Housing and Community Development, or HCD, accused the city of violating state housing law by not making the property available to affordable housing developers. To settle the matter, the city last month agreed on a stipulated ruling in which it would commit $ 96 million: amount of the fine for which the Municipality would have been responsible – towards the construction of approximately 1,000 affordable housing units in addition to the stadium ownership.
In a press conference, the lawyer. General Rob Bonta presented the deal as a win-win proposition, with Anaheim getting overall housing cheaper and faster, as the initial $ 96 million in cash is expected to be used up within five years.
Moreno’s company, SRB Management, agreed to provide that loan by repaying $ 96 million in development credits, or about 80 percent of the $ 124 million the city had credited in the original deal.
In return, the city negotiated an arrangement and development agreement, or DDA, under which the number of affordable housing units that SRB would have to develop in the stadium was reduced from 466 to 84 or 104.
SRB would have 25 years to build those units. Otherwise, it would not be responsible for repaying the remaining $ 28 million in development credits.
“As we have stated repeatedly, the settlement between the City of Anaheim and SRB violated the Surplus Land Act. We extracted the maximum fine and additional commitments for affordable housing for this violation,” said Megan Kirkeby, Deputy Director of Development. of HCD’s housing policies, in a statement late Friday.
“The revised DDA is proof that the city and the SRB do not take our enforcement and affordable housing seriously. HCD will exercise everything in our power to hold them accountable.
“It is difficult to see how the DDA aligns with the stipulated ruling. We encourage the city council to reject the revision of the DDA. “
The Anaheim Planning Commission approved the revised deal this week. The City Council is expected to approve the revised deal next month.
It is unclear how HCD believes the city may have violated the ruling, or what provisions of the HCD ruling it might seek to enforce. HCD declined to comment on Friday beyond the statement.
The ruling encourages the city to seek external funding in order to assist SRB in building as many as possible of the 466 affordable units originally proposed, but specifically specifies that “the actual number of units to be developed must not be binding.” If SRB does not want to participate in the discussions on external financing, the clause reads: “such refusal does not constitute a violation of this judgment”.
In a statement, Anaheim spokesman Mike Lyster said the settlement fulfills a goal shared by the city and HCD: more affordable housing, and in this case the largest affordable housing expansion in the city’s history.
“We continue to disagree with the state violation notice, which has never been tested in court, as well as comments on the stadium’s site development plan,” Lyster said.
“The development plan is consistent with our agreement and we remain committed to exploring additional affordable housing beyond what is required.
“Now is the time to move forward and leave the disagreements behind, as required by our agreement with the state.”