Palo Alto argues housing case to ABAG

Decision expected in mid-March, planning official Steve Emslie says

Palo Alto took its arguments about a fair housing allotment directly to an Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) subcommittee Wednesday.

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2008 at 8:15 am

ABAG housing policy will lead directly to the mismanagement of our water resources. The movement and endless recycling of water between the atmosphere, the land surface, and underground is called the hydrologic cycle. This movement, driven by the energy of the sun and the force of gravity, supplies the water needed to support life. Understanding the hydrologic cycle is basic to understanding all water and is a key to the proper management of water resources.

Maude Barlow is the author of Blue Covenant: The Global Water Crisis and the Coming Battle for the Right to Water. She is a recipient of Sweden’s Right Livelihood Award, known as the “Alternative Nobel.” She believes the following:

The hydrologic cycle has been dramatically and deeply affected by our abuse and displacement of water. We pave over what’s called water-retentive lands so we don’t have the hydrologic cycle able to fulfill its responsibility and bring water back, for example.

There are private corporate interests that have decided that water is going to be put on the open market for sale. It’s going to be commodified and treated as any other saleable good. The question of who owns and controls water is very important. Private ownership leads you to selling it to those who can buy it but not to those who need it.

We are putting all our water eggs in the basket of cleaning up dirty water, instead of conservation, instead of protecting water at its source. We are deciding to clean up water after it’s been polluted. And there’s huge amounts of money to be made. And the concern is, who’s going to control that? Who’s going to own the water itself?

We need to push here in the United States for a trust fund for infrastructure. The sewage disposal system in the United States is in a mess. We have to fight the desalination plants, particularly in California, because it’s a bad technology, it’s an admission of failure. We can do much more with conservation and caring for source water.

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Posted by Bob
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2008 at 9:49 am

San Jose is building a recycling plant in which they take water from their sewage plant, purify it and reuse it. The technology it there. 30 years from now, when we run out of fresh water, all jurisdictions will be doing the same thing.

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Posted by Ada
a resident of Midtown
on Feb 28, 2008 at 10:08 am

What happens if Palo Alto refuses to comply?

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Posted by Bill
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 28, 2008 at 11:15 am

The state could try to withhold money from PA, like highway funds - or some group or league or fairhousing organziation could sue. Maybe it's time to take this issue all the way to the State Supreme Court. Palo Alto is a charter city, and it should lead the way to stop this ABAG facism and usurping of city rights. The state did not give ABAG punitive authority. It is advisory only. Other Bay Area cities have told ABAG 'where to go'.

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2008 at 1:35 pm

"What happens if PA refuses to comply?" My guess is our Council and staff are too chicken to butt up against the State.

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Posted by Quack Quack
a resident of Green Acres
on Feb 28, 2008 at 10:24 pm

I suggest we should deal the same way we dealt the ENRON settlement. Be a chicken. Make the residents pay up !!!!!!!

Shame on our City Lawyer. After Frank it is this person who needs to fess up.

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Posted by Cock-a-doodle-doo
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 29, 2008 at 1:07 am

ABAG should make Palo Alto and all the other cities comply. NIMBYS are panicking because they don't know what to do now that the chickens are coming home to roost, instead of commuting to the 'burbs.

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