I attended the entire Finance Committee meeting on Monday and yesterday’s City Council meeting. I applaud the Aldermen who during the committee meeting asked pointed questions on behalf of their constituents and who exercised their political power to produce the legislative delay.
Here are four of my questions regarding the private investor-public infrastructure plan being considered by the City Council.
(1) If the impact of a one-time summer event, the 2016 Olympics, required public meetings in all fifty wards doesn’t a privatizing investment infrastructure program with potentially multi-decade financial implications deserve the same public examination and input?
(2) Why is the structure being contemplated called a trust? What legal definition is being used?
(3) Can anyone explain how public assets/infrastructure can generate revenue/income/returns to satisfy private investors without requiring user fees of some kind for the public’s use of the public assets/infrastructure subjected to the private investment?
(4) The only example of the kind of private investment contemplated by the proposed investment plan cited during the committee meeting by the city’s Chief Financial Officer was the construction of a toll way near San Diego that turned out to be a boondoggle bust. Is there a positive (i.e. good for the public and the investors) example of this kind of infrastructure investment plan?