Mayor Lee’s Plans for More Inclusionary Housing

A group of people protesting San Francisco evictions marches down 18th Street. "Out of the bakery and into the streets," they yell when they reach Tartine. Photo by Molly Oleson

Beyond Chron writes about Mayor Lee’s Thursday announcement of plans to expedite construction of affordable housing.

The new policy gets affordable housing projects into construction 3-5 months earlier, and saves taxpayers over $2 million per year. Most importantly, Lee’s plan creates powerful incentives for private developers to increase their on-site inclusionary affordable housing requirements from 12% to 20% and offsite from 20% to 30%; they either agree to the mayor’s higher numbers or go to the back of the line. READ MORE

Filed under: Mobile, Today's Mission

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  1. John

    I’m not sure a threat to push your project to the bottom of the pile counts as an “incentive”. It’s more stick than carrot.

    But this is more positive approach to housing shortages than what many so-called “activists” are proposing. Ed Lee is establishing an excellent record of getting things done, and should be commended for his quiet competence.

  2. landline

    According to Beyond Chron, Ed Lee is part of the effort to reform Ellis Act abuses by instituting a minimum ownership tenure for its imposition. The no-fault eviction crisis is so severe that Lee seems willing to sacrifice the support of the relatively small real estate players that carry out these evictions in order to at least appear committed to legislative reforms to the much abused Ellis Act.

    • John

      I thought about that. Lee probably feels that it is politically expedient to do something if no other reason than, as you note, there are more voters worrying about being evicted that real estate folks, many of whom cannot vote anyway.

      Lee’s approach therefore is to come up with an acceptable reform, rather than risk a much stricter and more punitive reform.

      There’s an evident problem with the cited reform, however. Right now, these “speculators” perform a useful purpose for owners who want our of renting but do not want to personally Ellis. They can sell to someone who will Ellis for you, and do all the evicting, rehabbing and TIC formations for you.

      If there is a minimum holding period, then that owner will not have that choice, and so will have to Ellis himself anyway.

      Same result – just a different route. The real problem isn’t the people involved at all. It’s the fact that many rental buildings are no longer viable as businesses because of rent control. And these fixes do nothing to address that problem.

    • Frank

      A few years ago, Mark Leno proposed a 5 year holding period before a property owner can evoke the Ellis Act. It seemed like a very reasonable compromise to me, but he received zero support from other state legislators. Hopefully Mayor Lee will be more persuasive.

      • John

        Ellis targets just 3 cities in CA – SF, Berkeley and Santa Monica. I’d be surprised if an Ellis eviction has ever happened outside those locations.

        So the vast majority of representatives in Sac aren’t going to care about this either way. Maybe that means they won’t approve it or maybe it means they won’t fight it. But indifference isn’t a great platform to start out from.

        The five year rule has an obvious problem already cited. Owners will simply Ellis themselves rather than sell to someone who Ellis’s. I’m not sure what difference that will really make, even if this does pass.

        A better approach would be to stop viewing property ownership and landlording as a pariah occupation and start giving it some respect. Most SF housing is provided by landlords, so why try and undermine them?

        No LL would ever Ellis a viable business. It’s the basketcase buildings that are doomed.

  3. val local

    don’t forget this is the same mayor lee who wants to bribe the millionaire owners of the golden gate warriors with up to 66 years of annual rent credits for Pier 30-32, valued at $1,970,000 per year, the transfer of Seawall Lot 330 from the Port to GSW, valued at $30,400,000, and 30 years
    of foregone General Fund property tax revenue which would be used to repay a $60 million IFD
    bond; affordable, no subsidized “housing” for the rich

    • Mission resident

      The new warrior stadium will help the little guy more than the rich by providing numerous jobs and an influx of people that will shop and eat at local businesses. Only 25 percent of the use would be for the warriors. The other 75 percent would be concerts and events which now all go to san jose. Also, it would provide a park area on the waterfront for all people to use for free. Right now that area is an eyesore that cannot be used. Please build the stadium ASAP!

  4. nutrisystem

    If you love traffic jams and crowds of loud drunks, then you’ll LOVE the Warrior stadium.

    If you love multi-times per week swamping of the public transportation system and a gigantic structure blocking bay views, then you’ll LOVE the Warriors stadium.

    If you love Mayor Ed “knee-pad” Lee lavishing taxpayer-owned resources and exceptions to waterfront building rules to billionaires, then you’ll LOVE the Warriors stadium.

    • John

      So you hate the ballpark then?

      Because all those criticism were made about that concept too. And they were all proven wrong.

      San Franciscans love their Giants and their waterfront stadium. But right now, with the 49’ers going, that’s our only major pro-sports team.

      We need to build this.

      • nutrisystem

        YES. That ballpark is an eyesore, its drunk idiot fans suck, and the traffic down there when there’s a game is horrible.

        • John

          I’m guessing you’re not a sports fan, right?

          • poor.ass.millionaire

            I’m with the lefties on this one 🙂 I hate organized sports and I hate stadiums. Btw, why do we need a second one. Can’t those warriors play in the giants stadium?

          • John

            Basketball is played indoors and baseball outdoors. That’s why the Warriors play in a separate but adjacent stadium to the Raiders and the A’s in Oakland at present.

            I’m OK with people who don’t like sports opposing a new stadium. That’s much more honest than opposing a stadium for trumped up ideological reasons.

        • nutrisystem

          Ask anyone who spends time down there or uses the 4th and King Caltrain station. 90% have a negative opinion on AT&T Park.

          The Warriors stadium would be more of the same, but far worse because it’s further from the freeway and Caltrain, and doesn’t have a huge parking lot nearby. It would be total gridlock before, during and after events.

          SF simply doesn’t have the transportation infrastructure to handle stadium events.

          • marcos

            These boosters see San Francisco’s overburdened transportation grid as an infinite sink for their get rich quick schemes.

          • John

            There’s a lot of investment going into transit in that area. Most obviously, the central subway and the new transbay terminal. We already have CalTrain and 280 and the T. And maybe HSR one day.

            So your argument doesn’t hold up for that neighborhood.

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