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Questions on Redevelopment

September 27, 1987

Strong opposition to redevelopment continues to grow as the Redondo Beach City Council, which is the Redondo Beach Redevelopment Agency, begins its public relations campaign to sell the public its redevelopment plan. Will the Citizens Advisory Committee be allowed to actively participate in all of the following publicity campaign actions to guarantee full, balanced information?

The Citizens Advisory Committee was elected by residents in the proposed redevelopment areas to represent their interests by advising the Redevelopment Agency. Six additional committee members are being added to represent interests of the entire city.

I sincerely doubt the City Council will reveal all the cold, hard and unpleasant facts about the redevelopment it proposes.

For example:

1. Who will write the newsletter? Who will verify the validity of the newsletter contents? The city?

2. Who will control the cable TV programs on redevelopment? The city? Who will be allowed to speak and for how long? Who will the city not allow to speak and why? Will the program be slanted in favor of redevelopment or impartial? Will facts be disclosed or only the usual chic and vague slogans and glittering generalities of redevelopment?

3. Who will compose the questions in the community survey? The city? Who will receive, count and maintain strict accounting of the responses? The city?

4. Will the council, which is also the promoter of redevelopment, make the presentations to the community groups and businesses, or will they hire public relations consultants to present the pro and not the con of redevelopment? Will redevelopment opponents be allowed to observe, speak and participate in these presentations? Will the public be notified in advance of the when, where and why of these presentations? Will all of the presentations be televised?

5. Why has the idea of an all-out, open and free televised debate on redevelopment been resisted? What is the City Council/Redevelopment Agency afraid of?

6. Why don't members of the City Council put the issue on the ballot for voters of this city to decide?

7. How many staff hours and thousands of consultants' dollars will be spent by the City Council/Redevelopment Agency presenting the negative side of redevelopment? Six months of planning and many dollars have gone into the "yes" side only--at the direction of the city!

Mayor Doerr and Councilwoman Martin have expressed different degrees of opposition to redevelopment. Martin is so frequently absent that her vote is not dependable.

TOM O'LEARY

Redondo Beach

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