WOM Berkeley Identifies Flawed Financial Analysis

We Live Within Our Means : Our City Council Should Too


August 2, 2022

For Immediate Release

Berkeley CA: 

WOM Berkeley Identifies Flawed Financial Analysis for Berkeley’s Mega Bond Measure; City Revises Cost Estimates Upwards by 22%

Hours before the Berkeley City Council was poised to approve a $650 million bond measure, WOM Berkeley identified a flawed financial analysis that underestimated the borrowing costs to residents by 50%.  The flawed analysis was included in the  330 page agenda package. With less than 24 hours to review the package, the WOM Berkeley research team was struck by the city’s claim that the mega bond would cost the average homeowner $250 per year. Geoff Lomax, a WOM Berkeley volunteer, sent the City Council and Finance Department an analysis that suggests the actual cost would be $495 per year. After receiving the inquiry, the city quickly revised its cost estimate upward by 22%. The Mayor's Office also contacted Lomax and indicated that the Finance Department had been asked to respond to the WOM analysis. The Mayor’s Office then attributed the flawed estimate to “the Municipal Advisor.” Lomax noted, “City Council should suspend any action on this measure until its impact on residents can be accurately determined.”

For more information contact: WOMBerk22@gmail.com

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