When is it “political games” and when is it political reality? And it’s fun to see the mayor praising Chris Daly, who did exactly the opposite of what the Lee administration has done (and it worked)
Sup. Julie Christensen doesn’t want “political games” with housing — but there is also political reality
By Tim Redmond
MAY 4, 2015 – I like it when Ed Lee is out there praising Chris Daly.
Well, not directly, of course, but the mayor had to acknowledge the role the former supervisor played in making it possible for a youth organization that fights violence (and like most nonprofits of its sort, doesn’t have a lot of money) to buy a building and create a more stable future.
Here’s the key point, and it’s one that the mayor ought to be taking to heart: Daly forced big developers to kick in money – quite a lot of money – to create a Community Stabilization Fund in Soma. The deal allowed for the construction of the Rincon Tower highrise luxury condos, which are an ugly plague on the skyline and part of everything that it wrong with the city’s housing policy. But at the time, Daly told me he didn’t think he could halt the project – so he shook the developers down for everything he could get. In the name of doing what is so important these days – stabilizing existing communities.
Here’s the Chron report:
At the celebration [Lee] said that the stabilization fund, which was set up by former Supervisor Chris Daly was an acknowledgment that small community groups like United Playaz could easily become victims in a rapidly rising real estate market.
“We realized that change was coming about, and if the neighborhood nonprofits were going to prevent themselves from being victimized by the market they would have to figure this out quickly,” Lee said.
No: Ed Lee had nothing to do with the stabilization fund. In fact, he did the exact opposite.
The Twitter tax break allowed at least one company to avoid more than $30 million in city taxes. There was no “community stabilization fund” in the package, just some largely bogus “community benefits agreements.”
As a result of the tax break, nonprofits who have made their homes for years in mid-Market, and who serve populations in mid-Market, are facing displacement as rents soar. Tech companies can pay a lot more than community-based organizations. Continue reading