Don Wagner nails Jerry Amante for hiking local taxes and water fees

70th Assembly GOP canddiate Don Wagner finally stopped harping about social issues long enough to absolutely nail his RINO opponent,  Tustin Mayor Jerry Amante, for raising local taxes and water fees.  Here is the copy from his mailer:

Jerry Amante’s City of Tustin:

Innovative Ways to Hike Local Taxes

Voters in the 70th Assembly District have received mailers from Jerry Amante’s campaign featuring tax fighter Howard Jarvis. They would be surprised to find that Mayor Amante and his City of Tustin have found several innovative ways to hike local taxes, even winning an award for their tax-hiking prowess from the pro-tax Association of Defense Communities.

It is no secret that Mayor Amante was a major supporter of the largest tax increase in the history of Orange County – Measure M, which has provided him, as head of the OC Transportation Authority, with control over billions of hard earned tax dollars.  Much more innovative have been the imposition of ever-increasing, never ending “Special Tax B” property taxes on community facilities districts (CFD’s) on the former Tustin Marine Base.

Community facilities districts are typically used to fund development of new facilities and infrastructure in an area, funded by special property taxes accepted by the residents in those new areas.

Schools, parks and roads have been built with bond money that these Mello-Roos taxes provide. So far, there are three Mello-Roos districts on the former Tustin Marine Base. These taxes expire as the construction bonds are paid.

Mayor Amante and his City Council allies have created a new tax – Special Tax B – on these CFD’s residents. This additional tax is forbidden to be used to repay the bonds. It is instead strictly to be used for salaries and services provided or
authorized by the City of Tustin, up to the City determined “Special Tax Requirement for Services.”

These services are defined as including police, fire protection, ambulance and paramedic services, recreational programs, and maintenance of parks and roads – all services that other residents do not pay extra taxes to fund.

How much are these “Special Tax B” amounts? In the Columbus Villages area, the maximum for a 2,000 square foot house is $1,020 per year, which increases each year by 2% to 6%, even if the CPI is negative, as it has been lately.

Unlike the Special Tax A used to pay off the construction bonds, which ends when the bonds are repaid, the Special Tax B always grows and never ends, according to City documents prepared for the CFD bonds. The $1,020 e.xtra per year is on top of
the $1,905 needed to pay the bonds – 54% in extra taxes each and every year forever!

The pro-tax Association of Defense Communities gave Amante’s City government an award for its many hidden taxes and fees on the Marine base, including:

• 2% of house prices on WL Homes sales
• 50% of profits on all market rate residential sales by Tustin Legacy Community Partners after minimal profit
• Required over $30 million in developer “contributions” towards City expenses
• “receives 25% of rents paid on retail tenant leases” at The District shopping center.

Recently, the hand-picked developer of “Tustin Legacy” has declared the project “worthless.” No wonder! Taxes killed it!

Will Jerry Amante take his legacy of taxes to the State Assembly in Sacramento? Voters will decide June 8.

Don’t be fooled by Amante’s anti-tax rhetoric. Jerry Amante knows innovative ways to hike taxes!

Sources: CFD documents for Community Facilities
Districts 06-1 and 07-1, Association of Defense
Communities web site at

Will Jerry Amante hike Your Water Bill 34% or more?

Planning problems led the City staff to recommend an immediate water rate increases of up to 34% with ongoing increases of 6-17% each year for an additional four years – nearly doubling many family water bills in total.

Initially proposed last summer, Jerry Amante’s two allies voted FOR the huge increase, but Amante did not and it was defeated. Some speculated that Jerry’s unusual vote against his allies was due strictly to the fact that he was a candidate for State Assembly, and that he secretly supported the measure, lobbying other members of Council to support it.

Now the City staff has mailed out new notices of possible water hikes, with the hearing to be June 15th, exactly one week after the Republican Primary for State Assembly!

Reading the article on the reverse on Amante’s record supporting hikes in local taxes and fees, you will understand why many believe Amante will reverse himself and vote FOR this HUGE rate increase.

About Art Pedroza