ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Councilwoman Lorri Galloway wants the city to stop paying $205,000 a year to the Chamber of Commerce because the business group has taken a lead role in helping Disney fight a zoning decision allowing low-income housing near Disneyland.
"The chamber is supposed to be promoting businesses, not pitting them against each other. Why should we give them one dime?" the councilwoman asked.
The chamber is organizing two Disney-backed ballot measures, an initiative and a referendum, aimed at preserving nonresidential zoning in the area surrounding Disneyland and Disney's California Adventure.
"We're giving them up to $200,000 a year to promote and work with Anaheim's businesses, not to do referendums against the city," Galloway said.
Last week, the City Council voted 3-2 to approve a zoning change paving the way for 1,500 condominiums just blocks from Disneyland and across the street from Disney-owned land that could one day hold another amusement park. The development would include about 225 low-income units.
The chamber's 41-member board voted overwhelmingly in November to take Disney's side in the housing dispute. The $205,000 the Chamber of Commerce received from the city this year represents about 9 percent its annual budget.
"Our contract doesn't preclude us from taking positions contrary to the positions of elected officials," said Todd Ament, a chamber member and co-chairman of Save Our Anaheim Resort District, which is pushing the measures.