Thursday, November 19, 2009

$600,000 Grant to Ron Stallings?

At Thursday's Finance Committee meeting the committee discussed Ordinance 2008-217 which proposes a grant of $600,000 to help finance the redevelopment of the Hippodrome Theatre. This money would not be paid back to the City but it is expected the City would see a return on its investment through increased assessments, meals and admission taxes, and theoretically the theatre would act as a stimulus to other development on Second Street. The project is being headed by Ron Stallings and another developer Kelvin Hansen. Mr. Hansen owns the property next door, formerly the Elks' Lodge, at 526 N. 2nd Street. The total project is valued at $12.1 million. This discussion follows on the heels of Mayor Jones' announcement this week that the City is expecting to see a projected revenue shortfall of $10 million for FY 2010.

Watch the discussion.

$600,000 Grant for Ron Stallings? from Silver Persinger.

View the original ordinance from 2004 which was patroned by former City Manager Calvin Jamison and proposed to give $800,000 to the developers, Ordinance 2004-246-247.

Mr. Stallings has contributed money to the campaigns of City Council members Bill Pantele [former 2nd District], Chris Hilbert [3rd District], and Ellen Robertson [6th District]. More details here.

This is also interesting to consider: How did Mr. Stallings get The Hippodrome Theatre in 2006 for $0 when it is currently assessed at $520,000?

Also interesting to note, $600,000 is the same amount RRHA is projecting as a shortfall for their Housing Voucher Program. Wouldn't this money be better spent assisting low income folks with housing than helping a developer with his for profit development?

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