Elites get free money from the City of Berkeley

It pays to be one of the elites in Berkeley.

The City Council has approved a low-interest loan of up to $800,000 to City Manager Dee Williams-Ridley to buy a home.

The $800,000 will come out of the city’s fiscal year 2017 general fund budget.

A standard 20-year self-amortizing mortgage with a $625,000 principal amount for a Berkeley home currently have an annual interest rate of about 4.25 percent for a buyer with good credit, according to Internet sources.

Williams-Ridley won’t be paying for that.

In 2010, former police Chief Michael Meehan received a $500,000 loan from the city to buy a home.

In 1996, the council approved a home loan of up to $200,000 for then-City Manager James Keene Jr., who had moved from Arizona to take the top Berkeley job.

The council approved Williams-Ridley’s loan without discussion at a special afternoon meeting on a 5-0 vote, with only five members in attendance, the minimum for a quorum.

Read the whole story in the The Mercury News


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