For Immediate Release
Wednesday, January 19, 2022
Stop Poseidon Coalition Urges the California Debt Limit Allocation Committee (CDLAC) to Reject All Allocated Funding to Poseidon
Group Calls Out Poseidon to Withdraw and CDLAC to Reject Poseidon’s Application
LOS ANGELES, CA (January 19, 2022) – The following is a joint statement from Andrea Leon-Grossmann, climate action director of Azul, a California-based Latinx environmental justice organization working to protect the ocean and coasts, and Susan Jordan, executive director at California Coastal Protection Network, an advocacy organization to protect the state’s coasts.
“Today, the California Debt Limit Allocation Committee (CDLAC) had an opportunity to deliver an important message to promote fair housing for lower-income families and individuals by assigning the allocated pool of $600 million to affordable housing. This move also would have rehabilitated existing assisted housing for low-income families and individuals in the state. Instead CDLAC delayed their decision until upcoming hearings to make a determination on Poseidon’s funding. This will only exhaust our communities, specifically the low-income working families and unhoused individuals who await reprieve while the CDLAC prolongs their housing struggles. That is why we urge CDLAC and the California Treasurer’s office to reject the funding application from Poseidon. We also demand that Poseidon withdraws its application so as not to compete for infrastructure funds that would help solve our state’s unjust housing crisis,” said Andrea Leon-Grossmann, climate action director of Azul.
In December 2021, CDLAC conducted a meeting to discuss allocating funds per designated ‘pools’ such as affordable housing, exempt facilities, and infrastructure. The Stop Poseidon coalition testified in opposition to funds for Poseidon which they sought to gain from the exempt facilities pool and which would have significantly reduced the total pool available for affordable housing projects across multiple categories by roughly 25 percent.
“We are disappointed that CDLAC was not decisive in their meeting today to dedicate all California Debt Limit Allocation Committee (CDLAC) Private Activity Bonds (PABs) to affordable housing. Poseidon Water, a subsidiary of the for-profit multi-billion dollar Canadian-owned conglomerate Brookfield Asset Management, one of the world’s largest asset management firms —with global assets under management in excess of $650 billion— does not need taxpayer money to fund its private and hazardous projects. It is incumbent upon CDLAC and the California Treasurer’s office to prioritize the communities that are struggling to pay rent and survive rather than subsidize a corporate effort to privatize water,” said Susan Jordan, executive director at California Coastal Protection Network.
For every dollar of tax-exempt bonds allocated to the Brookfield-Poseidon project, CDLAC would be depriving Californians $1.80 in affordable housing dollars because every dollar of lower-interest financing triggers about $0.80 in federal affordable housing tax credits. Allocating $1.1 billion in Private Activity Bonds denies Californians $1.98 Billion for affordable housing.
ABOUT STOP POSEIDON COALITION
Azul is a grassroots organization working with Latinxs to conserve coasts and oceans. It was founded in 2011 to bring Latinx perspectives and participation to ocean conservation and has long advocated for environmental justice and equity in the state of California, across the nation and at international levels.
California Coastkeeper Alliance represents watershed-focused California Waterkeepers as they fight for drinkable, swimmable, fishable waters for all Californians. It defends and expands California’s protective legislation and strengthens the function of our State Water Board.
California Coastal Protection Network (CCPN) works to uphold the core tenets of the California Coastal Act actively and effectively through policy, advocacy, and collaboration. We accomplish our mission by providing strong leadership to advance California’s 40-year legacy of coastal protection.
Orange County Coastkeeper was founded in 1999 with the mission to protect and promote sustainable water resources that are swimmable, drinkable, and fishable for present and future generations. Orange County Coastkeeper is a member of the International Waterkeeper Alliance, which has 236 different independent programs across 29 countries.
The Surfrider Foundation is dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s ocean, waves and beaches, for all people, through a powerful activist network.