Urban Habitat has taken positions on the following ballot measures.
Prop 15, (Schools and Communities First) Tax on Commercial and Industrial Properties for Education and Local Government Funding Initiative: Support
Would amend the California State Constitution to require most commercial and industrial properties to be taxed based on their market value. It would generate between $8 and $12.5 billion in revenue per year. Supporters include a broad coalition of Urban Habitat allies including Asian Pacific Environmental Network, Causa Justa :: Just Cause, East Bay Housing Organizations, People Organizing to Demand Environmental and Economic Rights, Public Advocates, and San Francisco Council of Community Housing Organizations.
Prop 16, Repeal Proposition 209 Affirmative Action Amendment: Support
Authorizes state to use revenue from millionaire's tax for $2 billion in bonds for homelessness prevention housing. Supporters include Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern California, Housing California, and SEIU.
Prop 17, Voting Rights Restoration for Persons on Parole Amendment: Support
Would make a constitutional amendment to allow people on parole for felony convictions to vote in California. Supporters include ACLU of California and the League of Women Voters of California.
Prop 18, Primary Voting for 17-Year-Olds Amendment: Support
Allows 17-year-olds who will be 18 at the time of the next general election to vote in primaries and special elections. Supporters include the California Association of Student Councils.
Prop 21, Local Rent Control Initiative: Support
Would replace the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act and allow local governments to enact rent control on housing that was first occupied over 15 years ago, with an exception for landlords who own no more than two homes with distinct titles or subdivided interests. Supporters include Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE) Action, AIDS Healthcare Foundation, Eviction Defense Network, and Los Angeles Tenants Union.
Prop 22, App-Based Drivers as Contractors and Labor Policies Initiative: Oppose
Would consider app-based drivers to be independent contractors and not employees or agents, overriding labor protections provided by existing law. Examples of app-based drivers include Uber, Lyft, and DoorDash. Opponents include the California Labor Federation, California SEIU State Council, Transportation Workers Union of America, UNITE HERE, Gig Workers Rising, and Amalgamated Transit Union-192.
Would generate the revenue needed to address the housing and homelessness crisis through a half-cent sales tax. It is projected to raise $150 million a year for 10 years, which would support housing assistance, mental health resources, substance abuse treatment for the most vulnerable residents, and increase hygiene services for unhoused residents. Supporters include East Bay Housing Organizations, Oakland Tenants Union, Faith in Action, Alameda County Central Labor Council, International Longshore and Wharehouse Union, and SEIU 1021.
Contra Costa County
Would help pay for county services (health and emergency services, safety net services, housing, and early childhood services) through a half-cent sales tax. It is estimated to raise $81 million a year for 20 years. Supporters include East Bay Housing Organizations and Ensuring Opportunity.
Would repeal Article 26, a zoning law that caps housing density and limits new construction to single-family homes. This measure would allow the construction of multi-family homes, which could encourage the development of affordable housing. Supporters include Alameda Justice Alliance, Alameda Renters Coalition, and East Bay Housing Organizations.
Would ban evictions during a state or local emergency, bolstering the city’s current COVID-19 eviction moratorium. The measure would also allow the city to charge a registration fee to owners renting out single-family homes and condominiums, whose units are not subject to rent control. It would also limit the rent control exemption for some Accessory Dwelling Units. Supporters include East Bay Housing Organizations and the Berkeley Rent Stabilization Board.
East Palo Alto
Measure V, Increases to the Transit Occupancy Tax: Support
Would enact a 2% increase to the Transit Occupancy Tax paid by out-of-town visitors in East Palo Alto hotels and short-term rentals to fund affordable housing acquisition, development, and rehabilitation. Supporters include Residents for a Just EPA for Measure V Committee.
Measure QQ, Charter Amendment: Support
Would give the Oakland City Council authority to lower the voting age for Oakland School Board elections from 18 to 16. Supporters include Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE), Causa Justa :: Just Cause, Oakland Rising, Bay Rising, Faith in Action, Asian Pacific Environmental Network, East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Economy, Filipinos for Justice, and Oakland Kids First.
Prop C, Charter Amendment: Support
Would allow non-citizens to serve on boards that advise City Hall on public policy issues like housing, health care, and civil rights. Supporters include International Longshore and Warehouse Union, San Francisco Women’s Political Committee, SF Commissions for All Coalition, San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin, and Aspiring Citizens Empowerment Committee.
Would amend fixed staffing requirements imposed on the police department. For example, the police department is currently required to maintain a roster of 1,971 full-duty officers, which is needlessly inflexible. The amendment will instead require the police department to submit a staffing report to the police commission every two years. Supporters include San Francisco Board of Supervisors and the Democratic Socialists of America – San Francisco.
Would allow 16 and 17 years olds to vote in local elections. Youth will also be able to serve on commissions, which they cannot do currently. Supporters include the San Francisco Board of Education, Chairs of the Harvey Milk LGBTQ Club, and the Alice B. Toklas LGBTQ Club.
Would increase taxes on property sales valued at $10 million or more from 2.75% to 5.5%. This measure doubles the city’s transfer tax for big property and brings in $196 million on average annually. Supporters include the Council of Community Housing Organizations, SEIU 1021, Harvey Milk LGBTQ Club, and the Alice B. Toklas LGBTQ Club.
Would authorize the City of San Francisco to build or rehabilitate up to 10,000 units of affordable housing. However, it does not provide funding for building or rehabilitating housing. Supporters include the Council of Community Housing Organizations, Housing Rights Committee, Coalition on Homelessness, SEIU 1021, and the San Francisco Democratic Party.
Would impose a height and density restriction of 55 feet tall and 50 dwelling units per acre on every parcel in San Mateo, including transit-oriented districts adjacent to Caltrain stations. It does not incentivize deep levels of affordable housing development or foster collaboration between for-profit and nonprofit developers. Opponents include the Housing Leadership Council, Save the Bay, and the San Mateo County Economic Development Association.
Would increase the combined sales tax in Vallejo to 9.13% from 8.375%. Opponents include the Police Reform Coalition and recent Ex-City Council Members.