The governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) says it has a lot of love for Fresno despite wanting to delay $100 million in downtown improvement funding.
The proposed state budget presented this week by Gov. Gavin Newsom said the money — part of a $250 million pledge last year for downtown Fresno — would have to wait a year because of the state government’s economic problems. Newsom estimated a deficit of $38 billion; the independent Legislative Analyst’s Office estimated $68 billion.
“The Governor and GO-Biz remain bullish on the Central Valley and Fresno’s post-pandemic recovery is a proof point of the city’s promising economic future. We know this region is hungry for investment and we look forward to continued collaborations during this challenging budget year,” said GO-Biz spokesman Willie Rudman.
Dyer: We’ll Move Ahead
Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer said the city will continue planning for what to do with the funding. The city is still receiving $50 million for the current fiscal year. The $100 million slated for FY 2025 will be delayed a year. That means the city will receive $100 million in FY 2027 instead — Fresno is already scheduled for $100 million in FY 2026.
“We will continue to be relentless in the pursuit of these dollars and to ensure Fresno receives what was previously committed by the Governor and the Legislature,” Dyer told GV Wire on Thursday. There is enough money to get projects started in June, Dyer said.
Still, Dyer told KMJ radio on Friday that the news was “disappointing.”
“One of the things that I worry about is this uncertainty of the funding coming in, that causes any impact on the developers. You know, I guess my job is to convince them to continue to come,” Dyer said on the radio.
The city plans to spend the $250 million on parking structures, sidewalks, sewer, and water lines in downtown and Chinatown. The money is on top of a $43.7 million grant to the city.