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La Mirada’s One Cent Tax Improving City’s Infrastructure

 

By Brian Hews

The Measure I Citizens’ Oversight Board presented its Measure I Annual Report to the La Mirada City Council this past September 13 at the City’s Study Session meeting.

The five-member Board, comprised of Chairman David Morfin, Vice Chairman Philip Massey, and Boardmembers Hal Malkin, Lee Olsen, and Scott Watkins was created to review and report on revenues and expenditures of Measure I, the City’s one percent transactions and use tax.

La Mirada voters approved Measure I in November 2012.

The five-year tax went into effect on April 1, 2013. The tax will sunset on March 31, 2018. The measure was placed on the ballot after a 29-member Citizens’ Task Force on City Finances and Operations recommended the action due to the cumulative impacts of the national recession, ongoing “takes” of local revenues by the State, the elimination of redevelopment agencies in California, and significant unmet infrastructure needs.

Measure I spending is focused on repairing streets, storm drains and other infrastructure as recommended by the Citizens’ Task Force and budgeted by the City Council.

Additionally, Measure I requires annual independent audits and citizens’ oversight of how revenues are spent.

The Citizens’ Oversight Board meets quarterly. Meetings are held at La Mirada City Hall, and are open to the public. Meeting agendas and minutes are posted and available on the City’s website. The next meetings are scheduled for December 3, 2015, March 10, 2016; and June 8, 2016.

At the meeting, the Board reviewed financial reports and other information detailing the revenues and expenditures of Measure I funds for the period of July 2015 through June 2016.

During the reporting period, a total of $5,743,911 in Measure I payments was received by the City.

Measure I funds are collected by businesses and remitted to the State Board of Equalization (BOE) similar to other sales taxes. The BOE then sends these funds to the City. A total of $17,518,239 in Measure I payments from the BOE has been received by the City since April 1, 2013.

$44,547 was spent on Phase 1 projects, $4,490,349 on Phase 2, and $188,149 on Phase 3 of the City’s neighborhood street rehabilitation projects.

The Board also received progress updates on the City’s capital improvement projects.

“The Board has verified that the Measure I funds used during the July 2015 through June 2016 reporting period have been used as intended for the betterment of the City,” said Chairman David Michael Morfin who presented the information to the City Council.

Phase 1 was the first of the City’s neighborhood street repair projects that used Measure I funding. Phase 1 included two project areas, Project Area A and Project Area B.

Project Area A included all neighborhood streets bounded by Lefingwell Road to the north, La Mirada Boulevard to the east, Imperial Highway to the south, and Telegraph Road to the west.

Project Area B included neighborhood streets bounded by Lefingwell Road to the north, La Mirada Boulevard to the west, Imperial Highway to the south, and Stamy Road from Lefingwell Road to Lemon Drive and Santa Gertrudes Avenue from Lemon Drive to Imperial Highway to the east.

Phase I expenditures totaled $4.89-million.

Phase 2 included residential streets in the area bounded by Alondra Boulevard, Stage Road, Biola Avenue, Rosecrans Avenue, La Mirada Boulevard, Ocaso Avenue, Barnwall Street and Dalmatian Avenue.

Phase 2 was completed in early 2016. The total expenditures for neighborhood street improvements in Phase 2 was approximately $4.49-million.

The engineering and design work for Phase 3 of the City’s neighborhood street rehabilitation projects is nearing completion. The project is expected to begin construction in fall 2016. Phase 3 will include residential streets in the area bounded by Stage Road, Alondra Boulevard, Dalmatian Avenue, Barnwall Street, Ocaso Avenue, La Mirada Boulevard, Rosecrans Avenue, and the east City limit. Stage Road, Alondra Boulevard, La Mirada Boulevard, Rosecrans Avenue, and Santa Gertrudes Avenue are not part of this project.

The design work for Phase 4 of the City’s neighborhood street rehabilitation projects is 60 percent complete. The project is expected to begin construction in spring 2017.

Phase 4 is proposed to include all residential streets bounded by Rosecrans Avenue, Biola Avenue, Roma Drive, Whiterock Drive, Alicante Road and the east City limit. Rosecrans Avenue, Biola Avenue, La Mirada Boulevard, Adelfa Drive, Alicante Road, Santa Gertrudes Avenue and Beach Boulevard are not part of this project.

The Oversight Board will continue to serve throughout the lifetime of Measure I. The Measure I Annual Report will be placed in the upcoming issue of the City’s newsletter and on the City’s website.

For information about Measure I, call (562) 943-0131, visit the City’s website at cityoflamirada.org or visit La Mirada City Hall.

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