The real ones to watch (and support) are things which require local governments to approve housing. Like SB 50, which defaults to approval for buildings up to 35-45 feet near transit. That's Paris / North Beach / Haight style density approved quickly enough to keep costs low. Then you can look at every existing 1 story retail building along bart and imagine 3 stories of apartments on top of them.
- Is there evidence that they would be less safe than makeshift homeless communities? My instinct would be to assume that homeless people in California are already congregating somewhere, and that those areas have increased crime risks. Does public/low-income housing make it worse than the current situation already is?
- Should we weigh the overall loss in safety for middle-income residents against the overall safety of poorer or homeless residents? My instinct is to say that the homeless population in California is part of its constituency, and that their needs should be considered equally with middle/upper income residents. Suppose overall crime in an area is increased, but the area simultaneously becomes safer for the homeless population itself. Is there a ratio between those changes where we would say, "it's worth the increased crime."?
I would assume California is similar since most people who live there are less likely to give things to them every day.
Public housing should be mixed into other neighborhoods, or (as my city does) developers should be incentivized to operate a certain percentage of subsidized low-cost housing in otherwise normal apartments.
Hannah Rosin studied this for The Atlantic (which is a progressive, left-leaning publication) and concluded that this simply spreads crime around making overall crime rates even higher.
"Physically redistributing the poor was probably necessary; generations of them were floundering in the high-rises. But instead of coaching them and then carefully spreading them out among many more-affluent neighborhoods, most cities gave them vouchers and told them to move in a rush, with no support."
"Left" and "right" tend to be about specific political positions and values, but an entity that's "liberal" tends to orient less around specific positions and more around meta-values that are about approach (and have a lot in common with western academic and especially post-enlightenment thinking), but will accommodate a variety of other values into discourse, just refereed by the meta-values. So, depending on what you define as "left leaning", you might find examinations and even cases for it (alongside conservative leaning points) in the pages a liberal publication, but they'll be grounded in liberal approach and will likely not be alone.
And that's why you'll see things like "Why can't people hear what Jordan Peterson is saying" in the pages of the Atlantic, even though Peterson seems frequently hostile to the left and vice versa, or discussions like "The Two Clashing Meanings of 'Free Speech'" that aren't value judgments about people like Milo Yiannopoulos.
You can mix low-income housing into larger complexes, creating mixed income communities. This does a lot to help create role models and show what life options are available and possible. It helps, in some ways, to break the cycle of poverty. This comes with the cost of utterly destroying the concentrated, focused support networks often found in less well off areas - they do not survive the dispersion.
The alternative is to prioritize existing communities. To focus on preserving the social ties and mutual support networks they know and trust. The downside is that while this improves the immediate circumstances, it preserves the concentration of poverty.
There's no ideal solution here. It's just a question of where your policy priorities lie.
It makes sense to put those less well off around more affluent folks to help keep criminal activity from pooling.
Cabrini Green showed that these large scale public housing projects are unpoliceable.
Today, as the state grapples with an unprecedented affordable housing shortage, Article 34 has limited effects on the construction of low-income developments. But it remains an obstacle: Los Angeles officials believe that without a public vote in the coming years, the city will no longer be able to finance such projects — even though it has the money to do so.
I realize that screaming at “NIMBYs” is practically a hobby for some, but I can see their perspective too. For one, the resources exist today to do better, but it’s not done. Rather increased housing leads to billionaires, Russian oligarchs and others buying up expensive real estate and not actually living there. For all that new plans claim to be aimed at housing the poor, it rarely works out that way.
If you want to reduce concerns, use the existing funds responsibly, and prove that future loosening of restrictions wouldn’t just be a bonanza for the wealthy, and lead to even more tech influx. Listen to people who express concerns that leveling smaller structure and building vertically:
A.) Would lead to a predictable boom-bust leaving California at some future date, with a load of ugly, crumbling infrastructure.
B.) That attempts to house the poor will go hand in hand with other efforts to increase economic opportunities for them, expand mental healthcare, and improve policing. Without that it’s just warehousing, and communities do suffer.
C.) Would change what drew people there in the first place, leading to the afformentioned boom-bust.
D.) That this isn’t all about extremely well-paid techies who will move where’ve the money goes.
I see more of a dynamic, in practice, of rich existing interests clashing with rich incoming interests, while the poor are used as little more than a rallying cry or scapegoat. I suspect that I’m one of many unconvincedby arguments of “the character of a community” under threat, as well as facetious arguments from “digital nomads” who are mostly just tired of the commute. I’ll say it again, as the article states the money is there, Article 34 isn’t a significant impediment, yet the poor are still systemically screwed.
I've become a firm supporter of the idea of gradually increasing non-occupancy taxes, with some scaling factor based off local overall vacancy rates.
If you want to fix this with taxes it's easy: repeal prop 13. We don't need golf courses in city centers or untaxed empty lots in prime locations.
On a brief search, I didn't find an estimate for revenue increase if Prop 13 were abolished. I'd guess it would be at least as much as the proposed commercial-specific mod.
My Prop 13 anecdote: a neighbor who bought a 3BR house on 0.8 acre in the 1950s pays less in annual property taxes than I do on one month's utility bills. I'm fine with that, she's pushing 100 and probably wouldn't be able to stay home without Prop 13.
Meantime, a 1940s 3BR house on a 0.35 acre lot right across the street from her sold for $2.9 million last December. Anecdotal, but suggests the potential magnitude of tax revenue change if Prop 13 were entirely removed.
I understand that your neighbor is old and that we should provide a social safety net for her. But that can be done in many different ways that don't involve massive handouts to real estate investors.
http://projects.scpr.org/prop-13/ is a good read if you like prop 13 anecdotes
Surely this would still require the 2/3rds majority of voters and lawmakers required by prop 218.
Do you have any kind of reference for this? It is a contrarian opinion compared to Case Schiller and other well-known housing research organizations.
The traffic in L.A. is the worst in the country. San Francisco, San Diego, and the OC too. That's where they want more "affordable housing." In areas that are already too crowded.
Those same subsidies apply to rental properties as well (now, with fewer caps as a result of recent limits to owner-occupied). Mortgage interest deduction for owner-occupied property serves to put owner-occupant usage (generally considered “good” for a neighborhood) on equal footing with commercial renting of property.
ah ah hold on...
All US software co's use both state and fed infrastructures for such things as net access, IP rights enforcements, etc