Representatives from both sides of the debate on Measure V, a ballot initiative facing Menlo Park voters in November, spoke at a forum hosted by the Almanac Thursday, Oct. 6 to make their case for and against the measure.
The proponents of Measure V were represented by Nicole Chessari, lawyer and co-founder of Menlo Balance, which authored the bill. The opposition was represented by Margarita Méndez, a member of Menlo Park Neighbors for Affordable Homes (MPNAH) and a public school teacher who lives in Menlo Park.
“Where are the teachers going to go?” Méndez said. “... We know how important schools are and teachers are and we know Ravenswood is underfunded.”
Measure V is a citizen-sponsored initiative on the November ballot that aims to restrict the Menlo Park City Council's ability to rezone single-family lots to higher densities. If it passes, the city will have to put any rezoning of lots zoned "R1" to a vote on a regularly scheduled election. Both sides have been claiming to support housing and teachers, but differ on the methods show that support.
“Measure V promotes quality housing in neighborhoods to prevent excess of traffic,” Chessari said. “And (it promotes) quality housing for affordable housing, multi-family housing in resource-rich areas where they’re supposed to be putting it anyways.”
Almanac Assistant Editor Kevin Forestieri and Reporter Cameron Rebosio asked Chessari and Méndez about the bill’s effect on low-income housing, flood school and a possible compromise at The Almanac's virtual forum, which ran for 45 minutes with nearly 150 viewers tuning in.
If you missed the forum, find out where both sides of Measure V stand on these issues and more, on The Almanac's YouTube page at almanacnews.com/youtube to watch a recording of the event