Rep. Ken Calvert gets to hate children for at least two more weeks
That’s because a southern California park district failed to approve taking land by eminent domain that had been sold to a group including the Republican Congressman. The Jurupa Area Recreation and Park District, which serves an area near Riverside, wants the four acres for a park or youth sports field. Rep. Calvert and his Stadium Properties would rather use it as the site of a storage facility.
The park district is suing the local water and sewer district over the 2006 sale to Calvert, on the basis of a judge’s ruling that the $1.2 million sale violated state law because it didn’t provide state-mandated notice to other governmental agencies that it was selling property. Calvert and his folks last year offered to sell it back to $1.5 million, but the park district puts the fair market value (what an agency needs to pay to acquire property through eminent domain) at $700,000. Clearly, Rep. Calvert and Stadium Properties aren’t liking that rate of return.
Last year the park district got community approval by a 3-to-1 margin, through a mail-in vote, to take the property. So why didn’t it do so Thursday night? Four out of five members needed to say yes. One was absent. One abstained. Why did one abstain? That commissioner won’t say. But the district is planning to vote again Aug. 13.
Even if the vote goes through, surely Rep. Calvert and his group will sue or do something to fight it. That generally happens. At least one thing Calvert can’t move the land out of town in the dead of night to avoid eminent domain.