What does the Measure B do? This initiative does two things: 1) Creates the Evergreen Senior Homes Specific Plan, a 910-home senior housing development on 200 acres of open space on the far eastern edge of San Jose, adjacent to the foothills, and 2) Creates a Senior Housing Overlay that can be applied to unspecified sites throughout the city of San Jose.
What will the impacts of this initiative be? An independent study has found that this initiative would:
Cost the city $24.5 million per year in increased services, such as police, fire, libraries, and parks
Increase traffic across the region
Weaken San Jose’s affordable housing requirements
Encourage residential growth on the outskirts of the city, resulting in sprawl development
Who is opposed to Measure B? A broad coalition of community leaders opposes Measure B, including Democrats and Republicans, seniors and millennials, environmental groups and housing advocates. See the full list here.
Is it bad for the environment? How does it impact Coyote Valley? Measure B would facilitate sprawl in the outskirts of San Jose, which makes air quality worse and contributes to climate change. It threatens the open space, fields and farmland of Coyote Valley by placing a senior housing overlay over all underutilized employment lands in San Jose. Should it pass, developers who have been unsuccessful in developing Coyote Valley thus far could cover the valley in other gated communities and housing projects, eradicating any possibility of preserving the valley for wildlife, flood control, agriculture , and you.
But don’t we need more affordable housing? Yes, our region needs more affordable housing, and this initiative does not address that need. In fact, it weakens San Jose’s existing affordable housing requirements. Senior housing projects built under this initiative would only be required to provide 6% of their units for families earning less than $100,000/year, rather than 20% as currently required. Furthermore, this initiative exempts senior housing projects from all requirements as to timing of construction -- meaning that affordable units might never get built at all. Although the developers make claims about “affordable housing,” the proposed project is a gated community with overwhelmingly million-dollar luxury homes.
How will Measure B increase traffic congestion? Although this proposal is cast as a “senior housing” project, it doesn’t resemble traditional senior housing; in fact, any 55-year-old tech executive with four kids can buy a home without restriction. The initiative explicitly describes this development as seeking buyers/renters age 55 and over, but most San Jose residents between 55 and 65 are working and have families. We can expect this project to create significant new traffic and other types of impacts. These impacts will not be mitigated by the developer, because they have exempted themselves from paying the fees that do so.
How does Measure B cost tax payers? The developers have crafted the initiative to avoid paying the traffic impact fees that any other developer must usually pay. This includes exempting the project from any Traffic Mitigation Improvements or Traffic Impact Fees that may be required as part of the Evergreen-East Foothills Development Policy. The current Traffic Impact Fee is $14,800/unit for residential development and is $12,800 per 1,000 square feet for commercial/office development. In addition, since this development is being brought forward as a voter initiative, it attempts to limit City’s ability to impose additional traffic mitigation measures under state law. Furthermore, this initiative has not taken into account the additional overstretch of other city services, including our Police Department, which is still trying to rebuild, and our Fire service.
How are developers able to write their own rules? Carl Berg and Chop Kennan, two wealthy developers, have leveraged California's Initiative process to create their own, more profitable set of rules that differs from the rules that everybody else in San Jose must follow. While they have provided themselves the flexibility to change the rules as they wish in the process, the initiative would strip the City Council of any authority to modify the development in the future. The initiative casts aside San Jose’s General Plan, which was the product of 50+ public meetings, input from 5,000+ community participants, a 40-member task force of community members, and the unanimous approval of the City Council. The initiative accelerates housing development outside of our established Residential Growth Areas, where there currently is little existing infrastructure to support traffic and other burdens of new residential development. This is a bait and switch. The proponents promised to use the Evergreen land for light industrial when they were allowed to build homes on industrial land in the Berryessa Area. Now they are coming back for more.
Will Measure B actually help veterans? The developers claim that they will house veterans, yet they make no enforceable commitments to ensure that any veteran will live in a single one of these homes. The actual language of initiative does not make any requirements or commitments to housing veterans, but merely offers “preference” for veterans to live in the rent-restricted units. Such a “preference” cannot be enforced for the benefit of any veteran seeking housing.
MEASURE C You can read Measure C here What does Measure C do? Measure C combats urban sprawl by requiring that residential projects in outlying areas meet high standards for affordable housing, environmental protections, road improvements, and services for elderly and disabled residents.
Where does Measure C apply? Measure C applies only to lands within 1 mile of the southern and eastern portions of the voter-approved Greenline, which marks the outer edge of development in San Jose. By requiring that residential projects on current employment lands in those areas meet extra standards, Measure C will protect the open space of Coyote Valley, Almaden Valley, and the Evergreen foothills from residential sprawl development.
What would the impacts of Measure C be? Measure C will protect taxpayers from the costly and harmful effects of Measure B. Since Measure B would encourage residential sprawl, weaken affordable housing requirements, and bypass environmental review, Measure C places the following requirements on any attempts to convert employment lands near the Greenline to residential developments:
An analysis of the fiscal impacts to the city must be performed
Any residential project must increase its number of affordable housing units from 20% to 50%
Any residential project must also pay for road improvements, follow energy-efficient standards, use recycled water for landscaping, and provide support services for elderly and disabled residents.
These requirements will counteract the harmful effects of Measure B's urban sprawl, and will benefit San Jose residents.
Why are the Measure B proponents so angry about Measure C? The billionaire developers who put Measure B on the ballot are angry that Measure C will reduce the profits they expect to make if Measure B passes. Instead of being able to make millions of dollars selling luxury homes and sticking taxpayers with the bill, those developers will now have to provide 50% affordable housing units, pay to reduce their traffic impacts, and provide real services to their elderly and disabled residents.
What are Measure C's environmental benefits? Measure C protects the open spaces of Coyote Valley, Almaden Valley and the Evergreen foothills from residential sprawl. By thwarting Measure B's sprawl, Measure C will benefit our air quality and reduce greenhouse gases. Finally, Measure B requires any residential development within 1 mile of the Greenline to use recycled water in landscaping and follow "zero net energy" design standards, which are important for sustainability.
How will Measure C help taxpayers? Measure C requires that, before converting employment lands on the urban edge to residential sprawl, a fiscal and jobs/housing analysis must be performed at the expense of the developer. This will provide transparency and enable the city to assess the full financial impacts to the city and to taxpayers before approving such projects.
How will Measure C help seniors? Unlike Measure B, Measure C puts strict requirements on senior housing development to provide actual services for seniors, such as: shuttle service to transit centers and medical facilities; nursing care; memory care; assisted living; meal delivery service; and physical therapy. In addition, Measure C requires that such developments provide 50% of their units as affordable housing -- an increase from the 20% currently required.
Does Measure C affect property rights? No. Measure C only applies when landowners attempt to change their zoning from industrial or commercial uses to residential. Landowners are free to develop their property according to the General Plan, just like every other landowner in the city.
info@NoOnBsj.com | Paid for by Neighbors for Affordable Housing and Open Space - No on B ,Yes on C FPPC# 1401438 Neighbors for Affordable Housing and Open Space is a grassroots group of neighborhood leaders, seniors, veterans, millennials, environmentalists, and nonprofits who care about affordable housing and open space in San Jose and the region. We will stop the deceptive developer initiative coming to voters June 2018.