Menlo Balance

ATTN: Nicole Chessari and Timothy Yaeger

We’re glad to see Menlo Balance offer yet another way for California residents and taxpayers to register their objections to the unilateral and inflexible state housing mandates that ignore all common sense factors and the drastic changes in the economy and workforce wrought by years of Covid and excessive office development.

We’re appalled that state officials continue to reject any and all local appeals to adjust the housing targets in the face of reality:  declining populations, remote working, severe droughts and the risk of fire, the unique value of historic sites that attract tourism dollars — to name just a few.

We’re angry that politicians ignored the majority of Californians who oppose SB9 and SB10. Before the vote, they bobbed and weaved when questioned by their constituents knowing they’d rush through these poorly conceived bills pushed by deep-pocketed backers.

We’re disgusted that once the bills passed, Gov.  Newsom instantly became such an adamant supporter and directed his administration to refuse all questions and reject all appeals, ignoring all human and economic costs and uncertainties.

Population is declining along with the water in our reservoirs.  People are wondering whether to try to build back their businesses and/or if they’ll be displaced by housing, they’re wondering who will compensate them for their pricey new solar collector blocked by the new apartment building next door — the government officials who pushed solar? the developer?

Given these realities, we’re aghast at the utter absurdity that the unelected officials at ABAG can unilaterally dictate that the already-congested San Francisco Bay Area must plan for and build another 440,000 housing units in the next eight years or so (housing possibly more than 1,000,000 people).

These are real concerns and its high time to address them.

We urge Gov. Newsom and Attorney General Bonta to start listening to the voters and address the real reasons why housing in California has become unaffordable for so many.

PASZ Steering Committee

Ann Lafargue Balin
Mary Gallagher
Maurice Green
Joe Hirsch
Terry Holzemer
Suzanne Keehn
Ben Lerner
Paul Machado
Jo Ann Mandinach
Greg Schmid