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Original post made
on May 17, 2012
Very convenient. The city is "forced" to go on this housing binge just as it was about to disband its Housing Department and layoff 3 city staff members. Hmm.
1975 housing units is way too many housing units to be adding to an area the size of Menlo Park.
Also, I am not going to take on a life savings worth of debt to live in a condo or townhouse development with BMR in it. The HOA fees are $1000 or so for the non-BMR residents in the complex near the train station where I believe the city is still paying off the mortgage of a BMR place they had to take over because the woman defaulted on the mortgage and lived rent free for several months. This is in addition to having to pay property taxes at least 2 to 3 times what others in the community are now paying. It's just does not make sense, and it is not fair to keep constantly throwing the financial burdens of past guilts or excesses on the next generation, in this case the next generation of homeowners.
Menlo should be ashamed for not having met state requirements for 20 years, if what the lawsuit states is true. Now the catch up will be painful in every way possible.
1975 units is a lot for a city the size of Menlo.
Gov't out of control - it's interesting the commenters keep using this one example over & over again of the woman who defaulted. It's time that we hear a more balanced view of affordable housing - both successes & failures.
Here in Palo Alto, it's worth noting that the city has yet to even submit a housing element to the Dept. of Housing & Community Development (Web Link), so I think it advisable that PA staff, planning commissioners, and yes, the city council, stay abreast of developments in MP.
I hope Menlo adopts the agreement.
Public Advocates has an excellent track record in this area.
Check out the Pleasanton agreement.
Town's Plan to Cap Residential Growth Violates State Law
Web Link, and a column on it: Residential Growth Cap Overruling Could Reshape California
Why did this organization sue MP? Why not PA, Atherton, Los Altos Hills, Woodside??
The organizations were concerned that Facebook employees would displace current tenants living in relatively affordable homes in Belle Haven. The city was so thrilled by the honor of being anointed by Facebook that it blew off all such objections. The only legal leverage the groups had was the housing element, so that was the basis of their suit. Ironic enough, it's unlikely that this settlement will produce even one new additional affordable unit of rental housing.
Behind the backstory is the truth that Menlo has been dodging their legal responsibility for many years. Facebook just pushed that to the forefront and it's taken the collective groups to show that Menlo lost its integrity in this area a long time ago.
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