Town Square

Guest opinion: SB 50 the wrong solution to state's housing problem

Original post made on May 1, 2019

State Senate Bill 50 is focused on a serious problem that all of California faces: the need for housing, especially affordable housing. However, SB 50 doesn't currently provide a solution that is good for all of California.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, April 30, 2019, 3:58 PM


8 people like this
Posted by Menlo Boomer
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on May 1, 2019 at 8:22 pm

Rick has it exactly right!! Instead of a bold, potentially transformative response to climate change, we need to focus on marginal and symbolic programs, which also ~happen to~ benefit legacy homeowners like Rick and me. Rent on any empty room or ADU is nontaxable, so I get to keep all of it? I can't think of any better approach than that!

Also, Rick nails it with the statement that ~everybody knows~ that people will still buy cars and park them on the street [citation needed], especially in Menlo Park, where, uhhh... parking on the street overnight is prohibited? If anyone knows what "the kids" are up to these days with mobility, it's a business lawyer (Web Link) who lives in Atherton, am I right?

5 people like this
Posted by really?
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 1, 2019 at 8:44 pm

If Rick wants to keep his Transit Station (Atherton Caltrain), then I'm certainly looking forward to that large mixed-use 4 story development coming to Watkins avenue!.

4 people like this
Posted by Ruth Wilcox
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on May 1, 2019 at 9:52 pm

Isn't the point of building greater density close to transit stations to 1. increase drastically needed housing and 2. reduce residents' reliance on automobiles? Retail food stores, restaurants, and other services will follow if they aren't already there. I'm not saying the legislation is perfect, but encouraging the growth of ADUs and renting out rooms hasn't brought relief so far.

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Posted by My view
a resident of Atherton: other
on May 2, 2019 at 1:18 pm

Rick clearly misses the point on building near transit stops which is to encourage use of public transportation. It is agreed that the original SB50 bill would change the basic character of many of the communities in the area. However, the rewrte which takes some key aspects of SB4 keeps the majority of the regulations focused on moderate height growth and mostly in larger cities.

This said, we need to recognize we are job rich in this area. Hence there is overloading in this immediate area. Renting of a secondary dwelling will not be the response. There are simply not enough. To generate more development in this area, perhaps there should be a waiver of assessment of the new space for a period of time should the space be used to provide affordable housing.

Finally encouraging schools to follow the initiatives of Google, Facebook and Stanford, to propose building of apartments for their teachers on their property so the schools can attract good young teachers who might otherwise shy away from the area.

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Posted by JCH
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on May 9, 2019 at 1:14 pm

so basically Rick feels that we should give Baby Boomers another tax break?? So low taxes (Prop 13 is great for long term home owners), huge appreciation (Atherton and CA) and now he thinks tax free income property is the solution for wealthy homeowners will solve housing crisis?!? The result is still a young person or couple subsidising an older person's living expenses and taxes while building zero equity for the future. Sounds like a great deal!