Mayor Gloria’s Deal to Buy 101 Ash is So Bad Even City Attorney Mara Elliott is Against It

by on July 1, 2022 · 0 comments

in San Diego

Todd Gloria in Ocean Beach, March 2021

By Arturo Castañares / La Prensa San Diego / June 24, 2022

San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria finally fessed up this week to having negotiated a backroom settlement deal to bail out his developer bros (and to end pesky legal cases that were uncovering all of the misdeeds of both his and his predecessor’s administrations) by doubling down and paying over $84 million for a building that requires visitors to wear life-saving hazmat suits in order to enter.

But, that’s not even the worst part.

The proposed deal unveiled by Gloria and Council President Sean Elo-Rivera on Monday is so bad -how bad is it?- that the 26-page settlement agreement includes a paragraph that declares that City Attorney Mara Elliott has given written and verbal advice to the Council to REJECT the agreement.

San Diego City Attorney Mara Elliott

Yes, the City’s chief legal advisor entrusted in the City Charter to represent the best interests of San Diego taxpayers has advised the Councilmembers to reject the Mayor’s settlement deal. And to bolster her position against the deal, Elliott released an 11-page legal memo outlining the many shortcomings of the settlement, including that the Mayor has not outlined any end-game for the toxic building that even the Council’s Independent Budget Analyst (IBA) says still requires more than $80 million in repairs to make it usable.

The building’s appraised value was around $67 million when the City first acquired it under a 20-year lease-to-own deal in 2016, and that was when the City thought the building was useable. Now, after having to evacuate the building in January 2020 over exposed asbestos material and non-functional fire life safety systems, Gloria now wants the City to spend over $160 million on a building that the IBA says may be “worthless.”

For the balance of this invaluable article, please go here.

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