Redevelopment involves the use of special tools provided to communities to improve their condition by eliminating blight and preventing the recurrence of blight. The elimination of blight involves the eradication of serious physical and economic liabilities in situations where neither private enterprise nor existing governmental programs have been able to solve the problems acting alone without redevelopment.
The State Legislature has found and declared (California Health & Safety Code Section 33071) that a fundamental purpose of redevelopment is to expand the supply of low- and moderate income housing, to expand employment opportunities for jobless, underemployed and low-income persons, and to provide an environment for the social, economic and psychological growth and well-being of all citizens.
The special tools provided to redevelopment agencies to accomplish these purposes include the power to acquire private property, either voluntarily or by eminent domain, by paying the owner just compensation for the acquisition, to dispose of acquired property to a private owner or developer for redevelopment at a price that will feasibly permit such redevelopment, and to receive federal, state, local and private financial assistance to finance redevelopment, including, in several states, property tax increments. Property tax increments are property tax revenues generated by increases in assessed value within a redevelopment project area after the adoption of a redevelopment plan over the “base” assessed value that existed prior to the adoption of the redevelopment project area. Redevelopment agencies may issue and sell bonds to which are pledged the annual flow of tax increments (referred to as tax allocation bonds).
Other tools that may be utilized by redevelopment agencies to accomplish their purposes include property management, the provision of assistance and payments to persons and businesses displaced by redevelopment, demolition, clearance, project improvements and site preparation, small business development, rehabilitation loans and grants, hazardous substance release cleanup, and expenditures for the increase, improvement and preservation of the community’s supply of low- and moderate-income housing.