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Letters: Not buying the SCIA argument

September 25, 2013

Re "Beyond the CRAs," Editorial, Sept. 22

The legislation The Times has endorsed to create Sustainable Community Investment Authorities (SCIAs) to succeed Community Redevelopment Agencies has a serious defect. It allows elected politicians to spend future tax revenues today.

The Times' editorial writers take comfort in the fact that SCIA boards would be "bound by state ethics, open-meeting and public record laws." That will not stop them from promising future tax revenues as collateral for projects they want today. The pension crisis is a result of this type of behavior.

The affordable housing piece of the proposed legislation is no better. Government attempts to influence housing markets to increase affordable housing have been uniformly unsuccessful. It is ironic that the lack of city services in poor communities has been the most effective of the affordable housing policies.

Shirley Svorny


The writer is an economics professor at Cal State Northridge.


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