Editor’s note: On Tuesday, Nov. 6, a general election for governor, lt. governor, and many other state and local offices will be held. Included on the ballot will be 11 propositions. The Town Crier will briefly describe the measure and identify who supports and opposes each proposition from this edition through the Oct. 25 edition.
Proposition 1 would authorize $4 billion in bonds for housing programs for veterans. This would include loans, grants and construction projects.
Prop 1 is just one of four bond measures on the November ballot.
The specific allocation of the $4 billion follows:
• $1 billion for the CalVet Home Loan Program, which offers loans to veterans for purchasing homes, farms or units in cooperative developments, and mobile homes;
• $1.5 billion for the Multifamily Housing Program, which offers loans for the construction, rehabilitation and preservation of rental housing for persons with incomes of 60 percent or below the area’s median income;
• $300 million for the Regional Planning, Housing and Infill Incentive Account, which offers grants for infill infrastructure that supports high-density affordable and mixed-income housing;
• $300 million for the Joe Serna Jr. Farmworker Housing Grant Fund, which offers grants and loans for farmworker housing;
• $300 million for the Local Housing Trust Matching Grant Program, which offers matching grants to local housing trust funds;
• $300 million for the Self-Help Housing Fund, which provides forgivable loans for mortgage assistance, the development of multiple home ownership units and manufactured homes;
• $150 million for the Transit-Oriented Development Implementation Fund, which offers loans and grants to local governments and developers for housing projects near transit stations; and
• $150 million for the Home Purchase Assistance Program, which offers loans to low- and moderate-income homebuyers.
The state would have to appropriate $170 annually for 35 years to repay the bonds.
In support of Prop 1, Gerald G. Wilson, past state commander, Disabled American Veterans, Department of California, wrote, “A safe, stable, affordable home is how we can provide a lifetime of support for veterans of all generations and their families.”
Other supporters wrote, “Prop. 1 will address rising homelessness in our neighborhoods. Families pushed to the financial brink are living in cars, doubled and even tripled up in overcrowded housing. Families with no other options turn to overwhelmed shelters.”
Gary Wesley wrote the official argument found in the state voter information guide in opposition to Prop 1. He raised questions about the state’s overall indebtedness.
As of Aug. 1, the major committee supporting Prop 1, Affordable Housing Now, a coalition of housing California, California Housing Consortium, State Building and Construction Trades Council of California and Silicon Valley Leadership Group has raised about $2.1 million. The largest donation has been $250,000 from the Chan Zuckerberg Advocacy.
Two firms, Essex Property Trust of San Mateo and Members’ Voice of the State, have given $150,000 each. During August, employees of Essex also have contributed another $19,000.
Employees of Novogradac and Company, with headquarters in San Francisco, have given $34,250 since Aug. 1. Some of these contributions have come from other states such as Massachusetts, Ohio and Texas, and other states, besides California.
No committee has reported any funding to oppose the proposition.