November 20, 2012
The Homeownership Protection Program Joint Powers Authority of San Bernardino County, the City of Ontario, and the City of Fontana (JPA) cancelled its October meeting. The next meeting is scheduled for January. The JPA initially met in August to authorize staff to develop a request for proposal (RFP) for considering plans to help underwater homeowners by seizing mortgages using eminent domain. When the October meeting was scheduled, it was widely expected that the JPA would review the RFP, hear public comments, and vote to publish the RFP. Reportedly, the meeting was cancelled because of quorum problems. If the JPA lacks the necessary votes to approve the RFP it would be a significant setback for the eminent domain plan. The JPA is the entity that was furthest along in moving forward with an eminent domain plan. The question now is whether the eminent domain momentum will stall out. Elsewhere in California, other municipalities that are reportedly reviewing the use of eminent domain are Berkley, Sacramento and Elk Grove.