San Mateo County voters narrowly approve $2.4 billion for transit, roads

By Erin Baldassari : mercurynews – excerpt

The razor-thing margin came down to 541 votes

That was the margin of victory for Measure W — a half-cent sales tax that is expected to generate $2.4 billion over 30 years to pay for bus operations, Caltrain service, improvements to highway interchanges and road repairs in San Mateo County… (more)

CASA Compact – History for people who missed it

Sometimes it helps to review history in order to understand how we got here. The video clip from Rosa Koire from Santa Rosa.

Savemarinwood reminds us of the history of Plan Bay Area: Six years ago, we had our first “One Bay Area” workshops and near riots broke out. The first people to object were a mix of housing activist and Tea Party groups espousing exotic conspiracy theories. Many dismissed them but they did shine a light on the huge injustice about to be imposed upon the people of the Bay Area. Others got involved. In Marin, long a bastion of environmentalism and intentional growth understood immediately, that this “One Bay Area” plan was nothing but a smoke screen for developers and the destruction of communities. While none of the scenes in Marin were nearly this extreme, Plan Bay Area has awaken a sleeping giant and today, “The CASA COMPACT” is the full realization of the dream legislation. If implemented, it will be the biggest takeover of local government in the history of the United States since the Civil War. We expect Marc Levine, Assemblyman, Mike McGuire, State Senator, and our local politicians to back our sovereignty (more)

Sometimes we need to review the history to see how we got here. This is a good place to start. Labels like tea party and NIMBY are applied early in order to discredit people. As we now know, social media is a weapon, used by all sides, but the cannot be ignored.

Once more unto the breach: The fate of Prop. C is now wholly in the lawyers’ hands

By : missionlocal – excerpt

Mayor Breed’s gesture aiding Prop. C, the homeless measure she opposed means less than you think. But, also, more.

The election is over. The winners have won, the losers have receded, and, as is the tradition, the losers’ backers will now make donations to the winners. This is how politicos who bet on the wrong horse get their phone calls answered and winning candidates chip away at their debts.

There are, however, some debts that can’t be repaid with mere money…(more)

Metropolitan Transportation Commission holding $29,000 taxpayer-funded meeting at Wine Country inn

By : mercurynews – excerpt

Metropolitan Transportation Commission holding $29,000 taxpayer-funded meeting at Wine Country inn

Talk about tone-deaf.

Members and staff of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission are holding a $29,000 taxpayer-funded, overnight retreat this week at the posh Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn, where the first order of business will include discussion of affordable housing.

Seriously. You can’t make this stuff up…

It’s great that commissioners want to engage in serious discussion of policy issues. But the 7 1/2 hours of planned meetings could have, and should have, been held in one day in downtown San Francisco, where the transportation commission two years ago moved into a new $256 million regional government building… (more)

Nothing is as much fun as spending OPM, Other Peoples’ Money and no one is as addicted to it as politicians.

City Manager Says El Segundo Is Not Ready For Housing Development

By Joseph Pimentel : bisnow – excerpt

Despite a housing shortage in Los Angeles and throughout California, city of El Segundo officials said the city is not ready for more housing.

El Segundo City Manager Greg Carpenter said there has been a lot of interest from the development community to build housing or mixed-use projects with residential components in the city…(more)

A dying mall near Apple’s headquarters is turning into a fight over Silicon Valley’s soul

By Roland Li : sfchronicle – excerpt

As Apple flourished in Cupertino, becoming the first American company worth $1 trillion, Vallco Shopping Mall rotted away in its shadow.

The 1976 mall was home to the retail giants of the 20th century: Macy’s, Sears and J.C. Penney, which all closed their stores in the last three years as foot traffic dwindled and shoppers shifted online. Today, Vallco is a cavernous, mostly empty space of 1.2 million square feet, with a handful of survivors such as Dynasty Seafood Restaurant and the Bay Club hanging on. On the other side of Interstate 280 is Apple’s new $5 billion headquarters, which includes a sleek visitor center and shop.

Since 2014, developer Sand Hill Property Co. has sought to transform the mall into nearly 2 million square feet of office space, more than 2,400 housing units and a 400,000-square-foot retail center.

Thousands of Cupertino residents have fought back. In 2016, Sand Hill Property submitted a ballot measure to win support for one version of the project, while opponents had a measure that banned office space and housing on the site and kept the retail size the same. Both measures were rejected by voters, throwing the project into limbo… (more)

A Judge Considers Stepping in After Encinitas Failed – Again – to Pass a Housing Plan

By Jesse Marx : voiceofsandiego – exerpt

Much of coastal California is opposed to dense development. But opposition in Encinitas has reached unprecedented heights, testing the limits of local control while a statewide housing crisis unfolds.

A San Diego County Superior judge sounded open Tuesday to suspending an Encinitas law giving locals final say over major land-use changes. That law is one reason the city has for years been unable to write a housing plan that satisfies state regulators.

Last week, Encinitas residents rejected Measure U, a ballot measure — the second in two years — that would have allowed officials to update their housing plan for the first time since 1992. California mandates that cities accommodate their fair share of regional housing needs, and that includes making way for more low-income options… (more)



LA City Hall’s 1-2 Punch Against its Own Residents

By Dick Platkin : citywatchla – excerpt

PLATKIN ON PLANNING-You may think you live in a community or neighborhood, and you would not be wrong.

But, if you log on to typical real estate websites, such as Niche, it is hard to find information about local communities. At best, you learn about test scores at nearby schools and crime statistics. Unfortunately, this same mindset also applies to the adjuncts of the real estate industry, including most elected officials, corporate media, and real estate industry lobbyists, such as Chambers of Commerce and YIMBYs.

To better understand how their outlook shapes land use decisions in Los Angeles, I have prepared a guide to the 1-2 punch combination they have energetically supported.

Punch #1: Up-zoning and Up-planning...

Punch #2:  Accelerated reviews and approvals of discretionary actions… (more)

After FBI raid, L.A. Councilman Jose Huizar is stripped of his committee assignments

: latimes – excerpt

Roughly a week after FBI agents raided his home and offices, Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar has been removed from all of his committee assignments, including chairman of the powerful panel that reviews the city’s biggest development projects…

Huizar has served for several years as the chairman of the powerful Planning and Land Use Management Committee, which vets proposals for apartment towers, hotel projects, new shopping malls and other large-scale development proposals. The panel also oversees regulations for digital billboards and Airbnb-type rentals and proposals for designating properties as historic monuments.

Real estate developers, outdoor advertising companies and others with business before the committee have been a major source of Huizar’s campaign contributions, donating to his reelection bids and officeholder accounts…

“We’re glad to see Huizar placed on the sidelines” while investigators sort through materials they seized at his home and offices, said Jill Stewart, executive director of the Coalition to Preserve L.A., which has spoken out against council members’ practice of letting developers — many of whom donate to their campaigns — build projects that are taller or denser than city rules ordinarily allow…(more)

CASA techinical committee Meeting November 14, 2018

MTC CASA committee tries to vote on a compact for Affordable Housing, but some members raise concerns over the purpose and goals of CASA as they are expressed.

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