Lucille Kring - TRAITOR of Anaheim - Part 1

During council members Lucille Kring's campaign she promised residents she would oppose the $158 million GardenWalk Hotel Giveaway

Not only would she oppose it, but she would back Mayor Tait's initiative to Let the People Vote on the issue of hotel subsidies.

Unfortunately, since taking office and attending a SOAR/Disney fundraiser, council member Kring has voted in favor of the $158 million GardenWalk Hotel Giveaway and remained silent when Mayor Tait called for the people to vote on subsidy deals.

Anaheim resident, Larry Larsen (seen in the video below), had this to say about council member Kring's lies: 

 "You lied to me. Just like you lied to countless others prior to last Novembers election. Last October, prior to the election, on a Sunday afternoon. You stood in my driveway for almost an hour. . . .I told you, in this election, I was a one issue voter.  I told you I was against the $158 million money grab. You told me that you also were absolutely against it and that there was no was you'd support it or vote for it. I took you at our word. . . So tonight, I want to tell the citizens of Anaheim that Madam you cannot be trusted or believed. That you will say and do anything for a vote. How much was your integrity worth? Were all of your campaign debts paid off?"

Tripling Down on Stupid: The Gardenwalk Giveaway

From the OJ Blog:

A developer in Anaheim wants to build two four star hotels on the Gardenwalk parcel near Disneyland in the Anaheim resort district.  The developer claims the market economics makes the project not feasible.  To assist in making the project feasible, the city will provide economic assistance in the form of $158 million in rerouted tax proceeds after construction of the hotel(s).  This equates to roughly $46.6 million in today’s dollars as the total assistance package is expected to run over twenty years (a dollar collected tomorrow isn’t as valuable as a dollar collected today.)

Save Anaheim PAC ran this ad in response to an ad placed by Kris Murray in the OC Register during the last election.

The city’s analysis claims the $46.6 million is roughly 16% of the development cost, which puts the capital required to execute the project at roughly $300 million. That’s quite a bit of money for the private sector to invest in the resort area.  From the $300 million, construction jobs will create permanent hospitality jobs including chefs, housekeepers, waiters, valets, office staff, receptionists, engineers, craft persons, salespersons, and of course—management.  The investment provides clear and demonstrative public benefit, including increased property tax and sales tax collections, which are all very good things.

The construction will also place additional burden on the public electric utility, the water system, create substantial traffic in and out of the resort district, increase pollution, place additional burden on emergency services, and divert land from alternative uses and taxation (i.e. if you build two hotels you can’t build a Walmart.)  All of these items incur a public cost that must be covered by taxes.

Who defines project feasibility and how the term is used is something of an art.  The city’s analysis states the project is $63.1 million (today’s dollars) short.  The package proposed ($46.6MM) still leaves a gap of $16.5 million.  There’s no mention as to how that $16.5 million will be closed.

There’s the first dose of stupidity, right there.  Based on what the public has in front of us, we’re being told that someone wants to pony up almost $300 million for a project, even with public assistance, will return 18% below what’s acceptable.

Bill O'Connell as the "Master of the House" from Les Miserables.

Think about that for a second.

According to the city’s analysis, after construction, the two combined hotels will produce a profit of $27 million a year.  Apparently, that’s not good enough.

Why it’s not good enough is a bit of a complicated question, but it has to do with alternative opportunities for capital.  Based on a bunch of assumptions, the city’s consultant concludes that a reasonable investor would be willing to pony up $220 million to build this project . . . not the near $300 million our current estimate is.  Our public assistance isn’t what’s required to break even . . . it’s what’s required for the investor to get his 13% return.

Read the full story here:

Anaheim council hears opposition to hotel subsidy

From The OC Register (with Save Anaheim commentary):

ANAHEIM – Several hours of debate continued late Tuesday night over a revised $158 million bed-tax subsidy to assist the developer of two new luxury hotels at The Shops at Anaheim GardenWalk.

As of 9:30 p.m., the City Council had not reached a decision about the tax incentive, mostly due to the dozens of residents who spoke against the plan. If the plan is approved, developer Bill O'Connell Sr., will receive 70 percent of the project's room taxes from when the first hotel opens in 2016 through 2042, or until he has been paid $158 million. Ten percent of the occupancy taxes generated by the anticipated four-star-caliber hotels would be placed in the city's coffers, while the remaining 20 percent would pay off bonds that funded improvements to Anaheim's resort district in 1997.

"Handing over $158 million is not only unfair to other hotel operators that are paying the bed tax, it is especially unfair to the residents of Anaheim," Rick Skinner of Anaheim told the council during public comment.

Other opponents, such as Yesenia Rojas of Anaheim, said any bed-tax revenues raised by the two hotels should be spent on helping the residents of Anna Drive, where a police-involved shooting last summer sparked days of unrest downtown.

"We have been told there are not enough community programs to help our Anna Drive neighborhood, but you have $158 million of our money to give away without helping out the poorest area of Anaheim," Rojas told the council.

An Orange County Superior Court judge ruled in December that the council violated the state's open-meeting law when it narrowly approved a $158 million subsidy that would have allowed the GardenWalk hotel developer to keep 80 percent of the project's bed taxes for up to 15 years, with the remaining 20 percent going toward the resort-bond debt and nothing set aside for the city's general budget.

"I would not have voted for it last year, but this plan is different," Anaheim City Councilwoman Lucille Kring said. How is this plan different? It is the same $158 million GIVEAWAY with no community benefits.

O'Connell and city staffers said the subsidy is needed so that Anaheim can compete with surrounding cities that lure high-spending tourists wanting to stay in luxury hotels.

"The people who are opposed to this act like the city is writing a check to me," said O'Connell, who plans on spending $283 million to build the hotels. That is a lie Mr. O'Connell. The City of Anaheim will write a check over the duration of the agreement directly to you.

"This is a completely different plan that I believe is win-win for the project and the city because no revenue is coming out of this until the hotels get built," O'Connell said. "We want to move forward, build these hotels, create some jobs and generate some revenue for the city." This is the same plan Mr. O'Connell.

Mayor Tait's message to Anaheim residents

This robo call went out today from Mayor Tom Tait:


At tomorrow's City Council meeting, special interests and lobbyists are returning to ask taxpayers to subsidize two luxury hotels.  If passed, our city will be forced to pay one developer 158 million dollars over the next 29 years, taking away money meant for vital city services such as police, fire protection and libraries.   If you oppose this as I do, please call City Hall at 


to express your views.  Thank you.  My committee Tom Tait for Mayor 2014 has paid for this call.

GardenWalk Hotel HISTORY: $158 million Giveaway RETURNS

Next Tuesday, May 14th the city council majority led by Kris Murray is going to try and reinstate this outrageous giveaway. Please take the next 6 minutes to view the video below from the initial council vote in January 2012.

Check back daily for updates on the upcoming reinstatement of the $158 million GardenWalk Hotel GIVEAWAY scheduled for this Tuesday, April 30th.

SOAR = Sucking Out Anaheim Resources

SOAR claims that "Anaheim residents and neighborhoods and residents are the biggest beneficiary of tax revenue generate by visitors to the Resort District."

From - click to enlarge

The truth is that over 50% of the TOT revenue generate goes back to the Resort to pay off debt obligations. Now they want to suck $158 million in future TOT revenue to help former Mayor Curt Pringle's client Bill O'Connell build two luxury hotels at the failed GardenWalk mall. A move OC Supervisor Shawn Nelson opposes:

GardenWalk Hotels - 7 years behind schedule

From the OC Register (Save Anaheim comments in bold):

ANAHEIM – A developer may wait up to two years to begin construction on a pair of luxury hotels at a Disney-area mall with the final project slated to wrap up by mid-2022 -- seven years behind schedule.

Bill O'Connel as the Master of the House

The Anaheim Planning Commission is scheduled Monday to consider whether to split two proposed GardenWalk hotels into separate phases. If approved, construction of the first hotel wouldn't begin until May 2015, while work on the second hotel would be pushed back to November 2019. Why is the planning commission even considering this when the developer has no financing or subsidy deal in place?

A developer plans to build hotels at the Anaheim GardenWalk property, seen in 2010.

Concurrent construction of the hotels was initially scheduled to begin this May and completed by November 2015.

The postponement is needed "because current economic conditions have made securing financing for the construction of the hotels extremely difficult," wrote Ajesh Patel, manager of GarenWalk Hotel LLC, in a letter delivered in February to Anaheim's planning department. Funny, Larry Lake was able to secure financing without taxpayer funded subsidies. Also, where is the study that shows financing is still difficult to obtain? Are we just to take Mr. Patel's word on it?

Patel said his company remains committed to the project, but that it would be "impossible" to meet the current schedule.

An Orange County Superior Court judge ruled last December that the Anaheim City Council violated the state's open-meetings law when it approved a tax subsidy of up to $158 million for the developer of the GardenWalk hotels.

The deal was advertised only as a "discussion" item on the council's agenda in January 2012. Opponents called the plan a "giveaway," while supporters said it was needed as a way to lure high-spending tourists wanting to stay in four- to five-star quality hotels.

A proposed subsidy plan is expected to come back before the City Council later this month, according to a planning commission report.

The Planning Commission meeting is set for 5 p.m. Monday at Anaheim City Hall, 200 S. Anaheim Blvd.

Save Anaheim PAC - GardenWalk Giveway returning soon.

On March 21st in anticipation of the return of the $158 million GardenWalk Giveaway, the Save Anaheim PAC ran this full page ad in the OC Register.

Special thanks to Brian Chuchua for partially funding the ad.

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Misinformation from the desk of Councilmember Murray

Anaheim City council member and Disney puppet Kris Murray placed this ad in the OC Register:

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Here is my response to her spin on the GardenWalk Hotel deal:

1. There is no provision in the GardenWalk hotel agreement that guarantees local jobs, union labor, or prevailing living wages. In addition there is no Community Benefits Agreement like LA Live in Los Angeles.

2. This is a GIVEAWAY of $158 million in future tax revenue. Tax revenue that would have benefitted the general fund is being diverted to a wealthy developers wallet.

3. The Honda Center, Convention Center, and Angel Stadium generate no direct revenue to the City of Anaheim (per City of Anaheim spokesperson Ruth Ruiz). These venues, while providing entertainment, are merely cash cows for the companies who operate them.

4. The Anaheim Chamber of Commerce, OCBC, OCTX, and SOAR are only concerned with getting sweetheart deals for the Anaheim Resort. The needs of the residents of Anaheim are not their priority.

5. Mayor Tom Tait, Mayor Pro Tem Lorri Galloway, City of Anaheim staff, and the former finance director and current city manager opposed this $158 million giveaway.

6. A lawsuit has been brought against the City of Anaheim stating these causes of actions:

1. Violation of Anaheim City Charter-Illegal Gift of Public Funds/Property

2. Failure to Subject Project to California Environmental Quality Act

3. Violation of the Anaheim Hotel Development Economic Assistance Program

4. Violation of the Planning and Zoning Law

5. Violation of the Ralph M. Brown Act

Disney wants more Anaheim tax $$$$$

It isn't enough that Disney and their minions at SOAR, OCTAX, OCBC, and The Anaheim Chamber of Commerce pushed thru the GIVEAWAY of $158 million in future tax revenue to build 2 luxury hotels at the GardenWalk Ghost Town. Hotels that were, and I believe still are, slated to be operated and branded as Disney properties. 

Disney President George Kalogridis and Jordan Brandman.

Disney President George Kalogridis and Jordan Brandman.

To jog your memory, read this portion of a City of Anaheim staff report and then watch SOAR aka Disney members vocally supporting the $158 million giveaway:

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Now Disney wants Anaheim and federal/state tax dollars to fund a ridiculous rail system to shuttle its guests between ARTIC, their future 4 star Disney branded and operated GardenWalk hotels, and the Anaheim Convention Center.

Disney's business model is absolutely genius. Here's how, I believe, they pulled off the $158 million GardenWalk Hotel deal:

Step 1: Mayor Curt Pringle begins subsidizing hotel development under his administration. GardenWalk Hotel developer and Pringle pal Bill O'Connell applies for the subsidy. The City of Anaheim hires Keyser Marston and Assoc. to determine how much subsidy is needed. O'Connell receives a $40 million subsidy and Disney gets on board to operate and brand the hotels once built. GardenWalk fails and goes bankrupt before the hotels are built.

Step 2: Disney spends hundreds of thousands of dollars in 2010 to elect a puppet council consisting of Eastman, Murray, and Tait. All backed by Disney, SOAR, OCBC, OCTAX, and the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce. Unfortunately for them, Tom Tait can't be bought but that's no problem  cause they still have Sidhu when it comes to voting to increase the subsidy.


Step 3: O'Connell comes back to the council (with Pringle now his paid lobbyist) and asks for an increase of $118 million (80% of the TOT for 15 years) due to the current market conditions. Without any study whatsoever to determine if this amount is reasonable (as they had done in 2009), Kris Murray, Gail Eastman, and Harry Sidhu vote to giveaway $158 million in future tax revenue. Mayor Tom Tait, Lorri Galloway, and our current City Manager and former finance director Bob Wigenroth OPPOSE the plan. Subsequently a lawsuit is filed against the City of Anaheim and a drive to allow voters to  approve future subsidies is set in motion. 


Step 4: The Anaheim City Clerk gives incorrect information to the group trying to get a ballot measure passed to allow voters to approve future subsidies. Signature drive fails. Mayor Tait brings forward a motion to put ballot initiative on the ballot and it is voted down by the Disney majority. Murray, Eastman, and Sidhu claim it's all about jobs when the reality is there is no agreement that calls for anyone local to be hired, to pay prevailing wages, or hire union labor. In addition there is no community benefit (ie. parks, affordable housing, etc. .) like there was for LA Live in downtown LA (which was heavily subsidized). LA residents received the following community benefits in relation to the LA LIVE Project:

$1,000,000 for the creation or improvement of parks and recreational facilities.

$25,000 per year for a term of five years for the creation of a residential parking permit program.

An agreement to comply with the city’s living wage ordinance and to make all reasonable efforts to reach the goal of ensuring that 70% of the jobs created by the project pay a living wage.

An agreement to give priority hiring to persons displaced by the project and to low income individuals residing within three miles of the project.

Job training programs to be coordinated with community groups.

$100,000 in seed money for a first source (i.e. local) hiring program.

A requirement that 20% of the residential units in the project be affordable.

$650,000 in interest-free loans to non-profit housing developers for the creation of additional affordable housing.

An agreement to cooperate with the coalition to establish an advisory committee to assist with the implementation and enforcement of the agreement.

Step 5: The heavily Disney funded groups (OCBC, SOAR, OCTAX, Chamber of Commerce) work to elect new puppets to replace Galloway and Sidhu. Choosing to run Jordan Brandman and Steve " Chavez" Lodge. Apparently they didn't vet Lodge cause it turns out he was found liable for using excessive force against a jaywalker and cost the City of Santa Ana hundreds of the thousand of dollars. Documents from the case, obtained by our sources, show that the federal judge called Lodge a liar.

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Then we have Jordan Brandman who:

a. Vocally supported the giveaway of $158 million in future tax revenue at two city council meetings.

b. Takes credit for Oxford Academy for which he had nothing to do with.

c. Is being investigated by the DA for wrongdoing at AUHSD.

d. Opposed the Let the People vote initiative that would have put future giveaway decisions in the hands of Anaheim voters.

e. Supported by SOAR, OCBC, OCTAX, and The Anaheim Chamber of Commerce. The four entities that could care less about our community and who's sole purpose is to line their own pocketbooks.

Jordan Brandman with Disney lobbyist Carrie Nocella inside Disneyland.

Step 6 (the future): Brandman gets elected, cause we all know Lodge is toast, and continues the master plans of Eastman/Murray/Pringle/Disney. Which would include:

1. Expanding the Anaheim Convention Center by using the nonexistent additional TOT revenue that they gave away to the GardenWalk Hotel developer for 15 years.

2. Pushing forward Disney's taxpayer funded rail system to shuttle their guests. to their new GardenWalk Hotels and theme parks.

3. Use the failed ARCTIC transportation hubs massive parking garage to house Disney's 3rd gate parking lot. Why build it themselves when they can have one built on someone else's dime and reap all the benefits?

4. Grant more and more extensions to the GardenWalk hotel developer and maybe even approve a larger more outrageous TOT subsidy. Cause we all know it's really about jobs not corporate welfare to the elite of OC.

Curt Pringle enjoying an event thrown by OCBC.

Mr. Pringle, do you realize that I would never have created this blog, spent money promoting candidates and opposing yours, spoken out at council meetings, commented on articles online, distributed lawn signs, filed public records requests, etc. . if you and your council majority simply took care of the basics:

1. A pro-active code enforcement department to keep property owners accountable for maintaining their properties. I shouldn't have to call the city to come out and force my neighbors to simply mow their lawn, paint their house, pick-up trash, etc. . .

2. A graffiti abatement program staffed by full time employees not the part time folks we have working on it now. A full time problem needs a full time staff. Funny how I never see graffiti in the Disneyland Resort area.

3. Curbing the swap meets that take place on my neighbors lawns on a weekly basis. Garage sales are for getting rid of unwanted junk once a year not to supplement ones income.

4. Limiting the amount of ice cream trucks who annoy me and my neighbors on a daily basis. We are up to 4 right now. One plays Christmas music year round. :(

5. Cleaning up our parks, expanding library hours, replacing retired police office etc. . .

It's all about balance really. All of Anaheim needs to be supported not just the Anaheim resort. That's where you made your biggest mistake Mr. Pringle.

Curt Pringle giving his orders to Disney lobbyist Carrie Nocella.

The case against Jordan Brandman


In politics, pay to play refers to a system, akin to payola in the music industry, by which one pays (or must pay) money to become a player.

The payer(s), in this case, SOAR (a.k.a. Disney), OCBC, OCTAX, The Anaheim Chamber of Commerce, and the GardenWalk hotel developers, made campaign contributions to Kris Murray, Gail Eastman, Harry Sidhu, and Jordan Brandman (Jordan Brandman only verbally supported this deal), and in return received $158 million in tax subsidies to build two privately owned hotels at the failed GardenWalk mall. 



In January 2012, the Anaheim City Council approved up to $158 million in TOT subsidies to a private developer named Bill O'Connell to build two luxury hotels at the failed GardenWalk mall. This was an amendment to a previously exisiting agreement which gave Bill O'Connell upwards of $40 million in TOT subsidies.

Bill O'Connell


TOT, or Transient Occupancy Tax, is charged to guests who stay in a hotel in the City of Anaheim. The TOT funds acquired are used by the City of Anaheim to support vital services, such as police and fire services. Under this agreement, the developer, once the hotels are built, would keep 80% of the TOT funds for up to 15 years or $158 million dollars. The other 20% would go to pay off bonds used to revitalize the areas around Disneyland. This means the City of Anaheim would receive NO TOT for almost TWO DECADES from this development.


Mayor Tom Tait, Mayor Pro Tem Lorri Galloway, and City Manager Bob Wigenroth all OPPOSED this giveaway of tax funds. In addition, the report issued by the city staff also opposed the deal.

Mayor Tom Tait

The reasoning behind their decision to OPPOSE this project is highlighted in the video below.


Jordan Brandman vocally supported this $158 million GIVEAWAY at two council meetings:


Jordan Brandman claims it is all about jobs; jobs for the students that he oversees as a board member of the Anaheim Union High School District,as well as their parents. "Highly skilled jobs," as he puts it, but the reality is that the average hotel employee makes around $37,000 a year. The agreement has no clauses that require the developer to hire local Anaheim labor, pay living wages, or hire union workers. In addition, it has been over 3 years since the original agreement was put in place and there are still NO JOBS.


Jordan Brandman received up to $8900 in campaign contributions for his 2012 City Council run in the months leading up to his speech at the council meeting from the developers, unions, and other folks directly involved with the GardenWalk project.

Furthermore, Jordan Brandman calls former Mayor Curt Pringle his "mentor," and Mr. Pringle, now a lobbyist, represented hotelier Bill O'Connell in his efforts to secure this tax subsidy of up to $158 million.

The video below is from the council meeting in which the aforementioned agreement was approved. It has been edited to show each of the individuals and organizations that supported Jordan Brandman and the amounts they contributed to his campaign:

Jordan claims in his recent mailer that:

"My decisions have ALWAYS been shaped by the citizens of Anaheim." It should read "My decisions have ALWAYS been shaped by the wealthy special interests outside Anaheim."

Want further proof that he doesn't stand behind the residents of Anaheim? Here is Anaheim City School District Board Member Dr. Jose Moreno addressing Jordan Brandman:

The Giveaway 3 - Murray/Eastman/Sidhu


In my opinion, their votes were bought and paid for by Support Our Anaheim Resort (SOAR) a.k.a. Disney, the Orange County Business Council (OCBC), OC Taxpayers Association (OCTAX), the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce,  the unions. and the developers.



Kris Murray

OCTAX $7,924 - Kris Murray now sits on the Board of Directors

OCBC $1700 - Kris Murray now sits on a Advocacy and Government Affairs Committee

SOAR $34,101 - Kris Murray now sits on the SOAR Advisory Committee

Anaheim Chamber of Commerce $65,000+ (slate mailer featuring all 3 candidates)

Gail Eastman

OCTAX $1,000

SOAR $35,929 - Gail Eastman now sits on the SOAR Advisory Committee

Anaheim Chamber of Commerce $65,000+ (slate mailer featuring all 3 candidates)

Gail Eastman with Bill O'Connell (hotel developer) to the right.

Gail Eastman with Bill O'Connell (hotel developer) to the right.


SOAR, as you will see from the video below, heavily supported this giveaway of future tax revenue to the City of Anaheim. 


$47,000 in 2010 - election year


OCTAX $10,000 

OCBC $15,000

Anaheim Chamber of Commerce $55,000


This is an excerpt from the original agreement:

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Yes. Here is Gail Eastman's 700 form that shows over $3500 worth of FREE admissions to Disneyland before, and after, she was elected in 2010:

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SOAR (funded by Disney) is made up of an Advisory Committe and a PAC. Kris Murray and Gail Eastman sit on the SOAR Advisory Committee along with their pals: GardenWalk hotel developer Bill O'Connell, Disney lobbyist Carrie Nocella, OCTAX President Reed Royalty, and Anaheim Chamber of Commerce President Todd Ament


A PAC is a political action committee. Essentially it is a group that can collect unlimited amounts of contributions and use them to support political candidates.

In the video below, Kris Murray and  Gail Eastman clarify their involvement with SOAR. They state that they received no benefits, but when you look at the money SOAR spent to have them elected, you may conclude otherwise.

The Black Hole of Public-Private partnerships

Kris Murray touted the "Tradition of Public/Private Partnerships" in the slide presentation she presented on March 6, 2012. This was council member Murray's attempt to show how beneficial public/private partnerships are to The City of Anaheim.

What she failed to disclose is that The Honda Center, Angel Stadium, and the Convention Center "do not generate direct revenue for general City services," according to Anaheim City Spokesperson Ruth Ruiz.

Ruiz goes on to state that, "Each facility has revenue sharing opportunities in place, but that revenue is held in the Convention, Sports and Entertainment fund to offset the department’s expenses". So essentially these venues are simply gold mines for the wealthy individuals who operate them. Who operates these venues?

Arte Moreno - Angel Stadium - Net Worth $1.1 billion

Net Worth $1.1 billion

Henry Samueli - Honda Center - Net Worth $2.3 billion

Net Worth $2.3 billion

Murray, I'm sure would argue, that they generate revenue via sales tax and TOT. Unfortunately the City of Anaheim doesn't have the ability to track revenue specific to an area of Anaheim. Ruiz states "We do not track revenues or expenditures by area of the City."

How then can SOAR claim that more then 50% of the city's tax revenue comes from the Anaheim Resort District when there is no way to track it?

Bill O'Connell's brother gets Multi-Million Dollar Giveaway

Looks like the whole O'Connell Family is into the game of stealing city TOT revenue for their development projects.

Jerry O'Connell

Jerry O'Connell

Turns out Bill O'Connell's brother Jerry O'Connell invested in the Crowne Plaza in Garden Grove and is now the co-owner. What did the city of Garden Grove give Jerry O'Connell and his fellow investors? Free land that the City of Garden Grove purchased utilizing $17.7 million in federal housing funds and a TOT subsidy.

It might also interest you to know that Jerry O'Connell used to the sit on the City of Anaheim's Planning Commission and ran for city council and lost in 2004.