Palo Alto took its arguments about a fair housing allotment directly to an Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) subcommittee Wednesday.
City staff members objected to Palo Alto's assigned 2,860 new housing units to be built by 2014.
The subcommittee will submit a recommendation to the full ABAG board, which is expected to decide the city's appeal in mid-March, Director of Planning and Community Environment Steve Emslie said.
Emslie said the seven ABAG representatives on the subcommittee showed interest in the city's case and asked several questions about the assignments.
But ABAG staff members recommended rejecting the city's appeal, along with appeals of four other Bay Area communities: Mountain View, Belvedere, Berkeley and Emeryville.
In its formal appeal, Palo Alto asked ABAG to use its historic population-growth rate rather than a rate based on the last few years of high growth. The city also contested the assignment of half of the San Antonio train station to Palo Alto, because it is primarily used by Mountain View residents. ABAG aims to concentrate housing around public transportation hubs such as train stations.
Thousands of new residents would overstress the school district, Palo Alto's appeal states.
In addition, requiring the city to build more than 1,000 "affordable" units amounts to an unfunded mandate to spend millions of dollars, the city's appeal states.
If the ABAG board rejects the appeal, Palo Alto is legally required to plan for the housing, Emslie said.
Palo Alto will receive its final housing assignment in June.
(Staff Writer Becky Trout can be e-mailed at email@example.com.)