January 14, 2014

Highlights from January 14, 2014 Board Meeting

In a number of unanimous votes the Rio Nuevo board ticked through several items on its January meeting agenda. The board voted unanimously to self manage the Catalina Parking lot associated with the Arena Lot that was deeded to Rio Nuevo as part of the settlement with the City of Tucson. There are currently about 140 monthly parkers assigned to that lot and today’s decision will allow them to stay there with Rio Nuevo collecting the monthly rent, about $5000 a month, until such time as the District moves ahead with the development of that lot.

The board also unanimously agreed to the parcel boundaries on the Westside Parcel that was also deeded to the District as part of the global settlement. The new parcel will maintain the linear park that borders the west side of the Santa Cruz River and will also protect the historic Carrillo House on the northern edge of the parcel.

The board unanimously authorized the District’s legislative liaison to work with legislative leadership around four legislative changes that are designed to create some flexibility for the District in 2014. The District will ask the legislature to amend the hotel notice to proceed since the district is no longer planning to fund and operate a downtown hotel. District members also expressed the desire to capture the Department of Revenue data regarding the coding of business tax returns, and will ask for amended language that provides that Rio Nuevo board members can reside anywhere in Pima County. Board members also approved a language change that would allow the District to approve contractual arrangements beyond 2025.

The Board also authorized the retention of a bond financial advisor to work with the District in an effort to free up the reserve accounts established when the city controlled district created the current bond debt. Rio Nuevo may be able to free up as much as $20,000,000 that could go toward development projects.