USC Price School of Public Policy

Fulton Testifies on Post-Redevelopment Era to State Lawmakers

Knowledge in Action:

Fulton Testifies on Post-Redevelopment Era to State Lawmakers

William Fulton USC Price Senior Fellow William Fulton delivers testimony in Sacramento.

William Fulton, senior fellow at the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy, testified March 7 before the California State Assembly in Sacramento on post-redevelopment California.

Fulton, a noted expert in urban planning, development trends and land use policy, spoke at a joint oversight hearing of the Committee on Housing and Community Development and the Committee on Local Government. The hearing was titled “Land Use and Community Development in California: What Tools Will Work in the Post-Redevelopment Era?”

According to Fulton, “the state should (1) bring back tax-increment financing in a more limited form and (2) do certain other things to facilitate redevelopment.”

“The loss of redevelopment does make it harder for cities to engage in urban revitalization efforts,” he added, “but there are other ways to get the job done, especially if the state can encourage state entities – agencies, universities, medical centers – to bring urban land ‘to the table.’ ”

Fulton proposed that these agencies may be equity partners, committing their land up front, at no cost, to a redevelopment deal in exchange for a financial payoff. He also proposed other “local options” that cities could explore including: sales-tax-increment deals (as opposed to property tax, which previously funded redevelopment); bonus densities to generate funds for infrastructure and amenities; and streamlined processing in which cities create specific plans for entire urban neighborhoods, enabling developers to construct projects more rapidly.

Fulton – former mayor of the City of Ventura, and vice president of the national advocacy organization, Smart Growth America – outlined his recommendations in recent op-eds in the Los Angeles Times and the Sacramento Bee. He offered key reforms which could lead to sustainable redevelopment programs in the future.