Sunday, July 10, 2011 – 07:00 p.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, July 10, 2011 – 10:40 p.m.

The City of Rialto may as well give The Lewis Group of Companies and Hillwood Development the Rialto Municipal Airport property on a platter and throw in whatever money they want and desire.

Of course, you guessed it!

Once again, this lop-sided public-private partnership has reared it’s ugly head on the Rialto City Council agenda. And of course it’s now time to renegotiate the already renegotiated deal to redevelop the Rialto Airport.

When will it ever end?

The following closed session item has appeared on the city council agenda for this Tuesday night.

2. Conference with Real Property Negotiator. The Redevelopment Agency will confer with its real property
negotiator concerning the following property pursuant to Government Code Section 54956.8:
Location: Rialto Municipal Airport and Adjacent Land (498 acres)
Negotiating Parties: Redevelopment Agency of the City of Rialto, Robb Steel
Lewis Hillwood Rialto LLC, Bryan Goodman
Under Negotiation: Both Price and Terms of Payment

The following item also appears on the public agenda.

Request RDA/City Council to cancel the joint public hearing for the consideration of
Amended and Restated Contract by and between the Redevelopment Agency of the City
of Rialto and Lewis-Hillwood Rialto Company, LLC for the sale of approximately 498 acres
of land including the Rialto Municipal Airport.

 

Yes, the developer group is once again seeking to amend their deal with the city to convert the airport and surrounding area into a mixed-use development commonly referred to as Renaissance Rialto.

But it’s looking more and more like a renaissance for Lewis-Hillwood than the city and its taxpayers.

Lewis-Hillwood Rialto LLC, a partnership of the aforementioned alleged billion dollar-plus companies can’t seem to keep up its end of any deal, and the Rialto City Council appears to be willing to give them whatever they want.

The goal is likey having to pony up as little money as possible. Particularly money to relocate the Rialto Airport’s aviation functions to the struggling San Bernardino international Airport.

Hillwood Development is owned by Texas billionaire H. Ross Perot.

Right, that Perot! The one that ran for President of the United States.

Why is Lewis-Hillwood constantly squeezing the city?

This is a big question on the minds of many outsiders watching the venture.

Does Lewis-Hillwood have the cash to consumate the Federal Aviation Administration payment as required?

Bankrupting the city redevelopment agency apparently isn’t good enough and, at this point, the partnership either can’t or won’t come up with the money they originally committed to.

Unless its campaign contributions to the city council members.

Can anyone see a red flag here?

Not adhering to a deal struck is a cornerstone of the way The Lewis Group does business, and this time they have their tentacles dug into Rialto.

This deal stinks and needs to be investigated before the taxpayers pay and pay dearly.