At a March 2 meeting of the Greater Golden Hill Maintenance Assessment District, members of the MAD Advisory Committee objected to a proposal by the Greater Golden Hill Community Development Corporation (GGHCDC) to use nearly $330,000 of rollover assessment fees from the previous year toward sidewalk repair throughout the community.
Some members opposed using taxpayer funds toward private-property repairs, others believed the leftover money should be returned to taxpayers, while others didn’t want any money to fund projects that might be considered baseline city services.
John Kroll, an outspoken member of the MAD committee, asked Jamie Fox-Rice, chief of staff for Councilmember Todd Gloria, to clarify what baseline level of sidewalk repair the residents of Golden Hill should expect and what can be considered enhanced services eligible for MAD funds.
Fox-Rice wasn’t sure how to define baseline city services and encouraged the board members to write a letter to the mayor and city council for a definition.
The following day, Katie Keach, deputy chief of staff for Councilmember Gloria, called this correspondent to give another shot at defining what MAD funds can be used for.
“Basically, maintenance assessment district fees can be used in any manner that is consistent with what was included when residents voted to approve their assessments. Generally, the funds can be used for anything that falls within the guise of what was balloted and decided upon by the committee that’s responsible for those funds. Those are community-based decisions. Speaking in general terms, there’s no reason why [MAD funds] wouldn’t be ultimately used for that [sidewalk repair].
“Sidewalks are a shared responsibility of property owners and the city. It’s not out of the realm of possibility that the assessment district pays for those repairs. They need to spend the money where they see a priority. Every maintenance assessment district has a certain amount of leeway with their funds -- that’s why they’re formed. But, if there are city services that are not being provided as they should be, then that is something that we need to fix.”
Go to the MAD Advisory Committee’s website at ghcgs.org.