News


Offer made to buy Palo Alto mobile-home park

Buena Vista residents wait after nonprofit group sends property owner a bid

The effort to save Buena Vista Mobile Home Park, took another step forward after a nonprofit corporation sent a bid to owner Joe Jisser. As Jisser ponders the offer to purchase the property, residents held a thank-you picnic for supporters and city and county officials at Mitchell Park on Saturday, Aug. 15.

Nonprofit group the Caritas Corporation, which has preserved 20 California mobile-home parks, made the offer about 1 1/2 weeks ago, said Winter Dellenbach, Barron Park resident and founder of the group Friends of Buena Vista. But she stressed it is a very preliminary bid.

"We have submitted a soft offer in writing and now we will see. That's a step forward, and it makes it that much more real," Dellenbach said.

Jisser could have delivered six-month eviction notices in May after the City Council approved the closure of Palo Alto's only mobile-home park and a resident-compensation plan, but he has not, according to residents. Residents also said Jisser comes to the park and walks around, and they pay their monthly rent, but he doesn't talk.

The City Council's decision sparked the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors and the City of Palo Alto to commit $14.5 million each toward the purchase. A total of $39 million has been raised, Dellenbach said. The Caritas Corporation has said it would raise $10 million in bonds.

The Jissers had planned to raze the aging mobile-home park and partner with a developer to build high-end apartments for tech workers. But that deal, with developer Prometheus, fell through during the protracted efforts by residents and supporters to keep the park open.

County Supervisor Joe Simitian, who has met with the Jissers and spearheaded the county and city commitments, thanked supporters on Saturday, who included members of the City Council past and present, members of the Palo Alto Unified School District School Board and the PTA.

He said he would continue to work to save the park "until the day comes when we can go to a ribbon-cutting for 117 units of affordable housing."

Palo Alto Mayor Karen Holman said the fundraising for Buena Vista proved the adage that "ordinary people can do extraordinary things."

"We're the trustees of that kind of thinking, of that kind of model," she said.

Holman also praised the efforts of the Buena Vista residents, who tirelessly showed up at council meetings and rallies and who gave impassioned testimony at a hearing by an administrative-law judge regarding the relocation-compensation plan.

"You are our neighbors. We hope you will always be our neighbors. It is community," she said.

Erika Escalante, president of the Buena Vista Residents Association, said that people are hopeful and a little apprehensive, but they are positive and hope that the fact that eviction notices have not gone out yet might be a good sign.

Dellenbach said that however things turn out, nearly 400 people, including 130 children who live at the mobile-home park, "now know how to stick up for themselves."

As the children swatted at a donkey pinata Saturday, Mayor Holman looked on appreciatively. The paper donkey shattered and candy spilled to the ground.

On Monday, the City Council will be looking at changing the ordinance for community impact funds for use of acquisition and maintenance. That could free up some funding toward infrastructure improvements, the next major hurdle, if the park is finally acquired.

Holman was cautiously optimistic as she recalled the Christmas posada celebrations at Buena Vista, where residents invited the community to share large pots of steaming posole stew, tamales and sweetened bread, and women danced, swirling in colorful costumes.

"I'm hoping this December we have a posada to end all posadas," she said.

The Weekly has compiled an archive of news coverage capturing the many voices of the people involved in the fight over Buena Vista.

Correction: The original version of this article incorrectly quoted Supervisor Joe Simitian on the number of units of affordable housing that would result from the preservation of the park. The correct number, which he stated at the event, is 117 units.

Comments

112 people like this
Posted by Neal
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 16, 2015 at 6:47 am

Not one dime of tax payer's money should be spent on this deal.


32 people like this
Posted by Agenda
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 16, 2015 at 6:56 am

This article has more to do with quoting Holman than talking about the actual title of the story.
Is winter dellanbach part of Caritas corp. her quotation makes it sound like she is.


71 people like this
Posted by What?
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 10:04 am

Ok so we put up $40 million of public funds that were paid to the city and county from developer fees. That money is supposed to create low income housing. Plus another $10 million from bonds sold by the non-profit Caritas. That's about $125,000 per person living in the park. Granted this money allows them to remain in their present homes but is that really the best use for this money? I think joe simitian may have gotten a little caught up in trying to help but went overboard.


74 people like this
Posted by stoidI
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2015 at 10:24 am

14.5 (county) + 14.5 (city) = 29 million. Is the bond from Caritas to pay for the park? Or is the bond to pay for the $12 million worth of upgrades Joe Smitian estimates the park will need? Do they have a $29 million offer or a $39 million offer?

If it’s $39 million, like the article implies, where are they planning to get $12 million to upgrade the park? Are we going to be spending over $50 million on this pity project?

This is public money, it’s not a joke, and I’m getting sick of it. I expect the estimated total cost, bid and upgrades, to be stated explicitly when the Council discusses it on Monday.


55 people like this
Posted by Slow Down
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 16, 2015 at 11:47 am

Slow Down is a registered user.

This is the last piece of the year's long extortion of the Jisser family. Don't give in now.


16 people like this
Posted by HomeAndHeart
a resident of Menlo Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 12:01 pm

Thank you Palo Alto City Council and Caritas for your perseverance.


52 people like this
Posted by GoneOnTooLong
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 12:16 pm

"County Supervisor Joe Simitian, .....said he would continue to work to save the park "until the day comes when we can go to a ribbon-cutting for 170 units of affordable housing."

Wow, @Curmudgeon was right a few weeks ago!
We sure went from
- current zoning if RM15 to
- current occupied zoning of RM26 to
- Simitian's magic zoning of Rm37 awfully fast.

Political wizardry in front of our eyes.

"On Monday the City Council will be looking at changing the ordinance for community impact funds from use of acquisition and maintenance. That could free up some funding toward infrastructure improvements"

Well that one I did see coming.
So long to the argument that "no taxpayer money will be used".
The City will always be scrambling to come up with money (taxpayer money) to fix and maintain the failing infrastructure and units in the trailer park.

Pure liberal-guilt foolishness, and soft headed folly.







26 people like this
Posted by GonOnTooLong
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 12:31 pm

"Jisser could have delivered six-month eviction notices in May after the City Council approved the closure of the park and a resident-compensation plan, but he has not. "

Not really.
If 6-month notices were issued to the renters in May '15, then the 6 months term would end November/December '15. The City's Ordinance clearly states that renters with students can stay till the end of the school year in progress (June '16). There is little point issuing 6-month notices so far in advance of when they can actually be enforced.


6 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 16, 2015 at 1:30 pm

"Wow, @Curmudgeon was right a few weeks ago!
We sure went from
- current zoning if RM15 to
- current occupied zoning of RM26 to
- Simitian's magic zoning of Rm37 awfully fast."

Expect RM40. It's a standard level on the city's zoning menu. As a discretionary act, upzoning requires an environmental impact report, and the enabling ordinance is probably referendable.


Like this comment
Posted by Silly
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 16, 2015 at 1:42 pm

Come on, ya'll, don't you realize that this carefully written and edited article is about some other town's mobile home park? The title of the article clearly states this mobile home park is Palo Atlo.


13 people like this
Posted by Mikael
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2015 at 2:34 pm

Just noticing the lack of outrage when tax money is used for corporate welfare where it's not needed but when tax money is being put to use where it's helping people that need help there is no end to it.

This is far from the only example of this pattern.

Interesting...

/Mikael


3 people like this
Posted by Senior Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 16, 2015 at 2:44 pm

Why is it that the price has stayed the same as the offer that was based on the former potential buyer being given a variance from the city? Since it did not go through, it makes no sense to try to match that offer. But then, little does make sense anymore.

While the intent on behalf of the city is good, it seems as if the owners are asking for too much, and in the end, taxpayers will be paying for it, even if it's just money not used for other purposes.


18 people like this
Posted by GoneOnTooLong
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:02 pm

@Mikael

I am not sure why you think these monies are "being put to use where it's helping people". As has been pointed out many, many, many times: the current offer of $39M that the city is offering to Mr. Jisser (not to the renters) will be the equivalent of $402k per unit ($39M/97 occupied units). The renters see none of that money and will in fact continue to pay rent for the rest of their lives in an amount that they themselves already find onerous and excessive (hence the rent control in effect at BV).

As a resident and taxpayer (and therefore a party to this purchase and obligation the City is encumbering us with) I have long advocated that the city either:

a. Repurpose 5 acres (less than .1% of existing city park and/or open space and install up to date utilities and pads and relocate the trailers onto that land (at a fraction of the cost), or
b. Just give each unit owner $402K which is plenty of money to buy a 3,000 sq foot house free and clear just over the hill (a commute I do daily) with a trust fund to pay the property taxes and utilities for life.

For some reason, you seem to think it is a good idea to do neither of these, but rather just give all $39M+ (it will be more than that) to Mr. Jisser, and become trailer park landlords. And somehow, with all our low income housing funds depleted and a new City tax burdon, we would all sleep comfortably in the knowledge that we have preserved the landlord renter quota at BV with the pleasure of collecting rent from our impoverished new tenants, and be responsible for the deplorable conditions the renters live under (I assume you've actually seen the trailer park and the state of the units, sewage system, plumbing, roads, etc.).

At least we won't have committed corporate welfare, right ?....
Hmmmm....
Mr. Jisser +$39M,
the renters $0M
the city -$39M
Oops.
Remind me again who is benefiting in this deal ?


12 people like this
Posted by GoneOnTooLong
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:17 pm

@ Senior Resident

The 2012 appraisal you will find in the city records relating to the closure hearings was for $30M (cleared land and current zoning (RM15)). See the city documents.
Web Link

Since 2012 Barron Park and Palo Alto land value has doubled (ref. Zillow) making the property worth $60M.

The WSJ article cites real estate agents valuing the property at $55M
Web Link

" The value of the park’s 4.5 acres could be as much as $55 million, local real-estate agents say."


On what basis do you substantiate that the value of the park is less ?


15 people like this
Posted by Mikael
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:22 pm

@GoneOnTooLong

You make it sound like the city is paying $39M for nothing. They will own the property, right? In the longer run it might be a very good deal.

Remind me again how property values have developed in Palo Alto....

Oops...did I think too much?

/Mikael


7 people like this
Posted by GoneOnTooLong
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:38 pm

@Mikeal

Sorry, I thought we were talking about using tax money for corporate welfare vs. helping people.

I'm sure the city will make a tidy profit if it buys up this particular plot of land and then sells it at a later date for a higher price. Good thinking!


62 people like this
Posted by Carlos
a resident of Green Acres
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:42 pm

City residents and taxpayers, you'd better wake up and tell the council what you think of this foolish and financially irresponsible move. Politicians will do/say whatever they can get away with to gather future votes.

I had mentioned before that this is the kind of third-world politics I witnessed before coming to this country. WHO do yo think will be stuck w/ the bill once the city assumes the ownership responsibility/liability of bringing up this property to code and/or maintaining it. Do you think your smart council members will be around to answer these questions? It will be you, me, and the next generation who will be stuck w/ these expenses that nobody is willing to discuss.

Sometimes I wonder why people in this community feel so guilty and/or naive about life that they have to get into the welfare business (especially using taxpayers' money). We all need to learn how to live within our means, and understand that living in Palo Alto is not a right. Most of us made all kinds of sacrifices to pay market rates to rent/buy in town.


7 people like this
Posted by Mikael
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:45 pm

Was there ever talk about giving away something?

The City (and most other communities around here) are also in dire need of affordable housing because I assume you will still appreciate public services and other services like fire departments, police, teachers, mail, stores to be staffed, nurses that takes care of you etc. etc. Those jobs aren't high paid jobs and at some point their commute isn't sustainable. No private property owner is going to provide that housing...

/Mikael


23 people like this
Posted by stoidI
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:47 pm

@Mikael

We have no idea who is going to own it, because no one has ever bothered to come out and tell us what the long-term plan is.

From the past article, Joe Smitian made it sound like Caritas would own it: ‘If enough money is found to buy Buena Vista, Caritas is prepared to "acquire, own and operate the site in perpetuity as an affordable mobile-home park community," he said’

I’m left to assume we’re handing $30 million to a non-profit and they will own the land, and after spending $14.5 million, Palo Alto will have absolutely no control over it.


14 people like this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:55 pm

"For some reason, you seem to think it is a good idea to do neither of these, but rather just give all $39M+ (it will be more than that) to Mr. Jisser, and become trailer park landlords."

It almost seems like this was always a done deal in one form or another, and Palo Alto residents' opinions on the matter irrelevant. Or perhaps most PA residents don't really care one way or the other? It doesn't seem like the City Council got very much pushback on the issue. No protests marches or anything like that at all.

"Remind me again how property values have developed in Palo Alto...."

Why, they are sinking like a stone! ;) Seriously, PS would make a mint if it ever sold the property. But is there any expectation it will do so anytime soon? That seems unlikely at the moment. Selling the property in 20 or 30 years would be immensely profitable, but a lot of PA taxpayers might not be here by that time.

Does the property need any fixes to bring it up to code? If not, then good. IF so, then who will pay for that and how much will it cost?


18 people like this
Posted by george drysdale
a resident of Professorville
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:55 pm

Let the Buena Vista deal of Simitian's go foreward. It will destroy any credibility government has left. The numbers are simply insane. As noted in The End of Rent Control . . . on the internet mobile home park price (property) controls in California will replace NYC rent controls easily as the number one rent control bad example. The Buena Vista will be a crown jewel. Let it happen, or are Simitian and the city council merely being cynical in their desire to get the votes of the mathematically challenged?

George Drysdale a social science teacher


Like this comment
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:56 pm

I meant PA would make a mint...


8 people like this
Posted by Supply & Demand
a resident of Green Acres
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:58 pm

If bought by public money, need to have raffle every so often so other families may have a chance.

A system like NBA draft. Give current tenant more odds but not make it a monopoly.


2 people like this
Posted by Mikael
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2015 at 4:05 pm

[Post removed.]


Like this comment
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 16, 2015 at 5:56 pm

[Post removed.]


37 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Aug 16, 2015 at 6:18 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"after spending $14.5 million, Palo Alto will have absolutely no control over it."

But Palo Alto will be held totally accountable for whatever happens.

Accountability without control is a recipe for disaster.


2 people like this
Posted by call the waaambulence
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 8:12 pm

[Post removed.]


3 people like this
Posted by Mikael
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2015 at 8:30 pm

Peter, can you support your statements with....facts?

Mikael


1 person likes this
Posted by Silly
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 16, 2015 at 8:46 pm

@Mikael:

Nah, this is where you'll be told to go look it up yourself...


15 people like this
Posted by chris
a resident of University South
on Aug 16, 2015 at 8:53 pm

Where are the residents going to live while the 170 units are built?
Are they going to bunk with Barron Park residents?
Barron Park residents have been suckers for all kinds of bait and switch schemes the last few years.


4 people like this
Posted by chris
a resident of University South
on Aug 16, 2015 at 9:00 pm

Wasn't it the Barron Park residents who pushed to get the "residentialists" to dominate City Council?

Good thinking, group. Now for your next smart idea.


7 people like this
Posted by A Taxpayer
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Aug 16, 2015 at 9:55 pm

Let's get serious! We are wasting taxpayer money from the new home owners of palo alto. Why don't we raise a tax of the people who have lived here more than 15 years who don't pay there way. They want to spend city money but don't contribute anything to city coffers. My neighbor pays $$700 in annual taxes for her $50,000 assessed home. And she wants to save a trailer park. While admirable in concept, let her pay $25K in property taxes and then we can have a discussion


6 people like this
Posted by Mikael
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2015 at 10:15 pm

@A Taxpayer

Now imagine that neighbor is your Mother and it's the house you grew up in.

The idea of a raise still stands?

/Mikael


2 people like this
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Aug 16, 2015 at 10:36 pm

[Post removed.]


6 people like this
Posted by Joe
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 10:43 pm

Didn't the owner say it's NOT for sale! Just curious what makes the city think it can buy it.


2 people like this
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Aug 16, 2015 at 11:14 pm

Joe- maybe it's not for sale but they're ignoring that and making an offer (minus horse head), anyway? The article lacks relevant info, and it doesn't sound like the City is doing much to disseminate accurate info, either.

And admit it - some of you were whingeing elistis-like. How can you be a newer homeowner and not know about Prop 13? What - the BV issue issue is bringing "not on my tax dollars" to the fore yet again? Mikhail raised a good point - where are the complaints about corporate welfare that we all pay? Is it due to the big name recipients being locals that you don't complain? Why do they get a pass but the potential possibilities for BV doesn't? Again - clearly this article is lacking and officials aren't communicating properly - but again - why no vehement complaints about how you support corporate welfare recipients who are locals? I'm truly curious.


3 people like this
Posted by Silly
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 16, 2015 at 11:19 pm

@A Taxpayer said:

>> "Why don't we raise a tax of the people who have lived here more than 15 years who don't pay there way."

So, people who have lived here (and paid taxes) for more than 15 years "don't pay there (sic) way?" [Portion removed.]


20 people like this
Posted by VotesWillTell
a resident of Crescent Park
on Aug 16, 2015 at 11:31 pm

When the next election time comes, they will not get my votes for the next term.


9 people like this
Posted by Chris
a resident of University South
on Aug 17, 2015 at 9:10 am

For better or worse, Palo Alto has become the laughing stock of the nation's Wall Street Journal readers.
Read the comments to the front page article Saturday.

It looks like our City Council flunked their finance class (if they ever took them).









2 people like this
Posted by Hulkamania
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 17, 2015 at 10:37 am

Hulkamania is a registered user.

"For better or worse, Palo Alto has become the laughing stock of the nation's Wall Street Journal readers."

As the WWJ has become the publishing arm of Fox News, why should we care?


4 people like this
Posted by Resident2014
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 17, 2015 at 11:06 am

I really hope the city look at all these comments. It is really a waste of our hard earned tax money!!


5 people like this
Posted by oldman
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 17, 2015 at 11:17 am

Who will pay the school taxes? since it is a charitable organization it may not have to pay real estate taxes, Hence WE ALL PALO ALTO residence will pay for ever

Great trick Mr J S.!


6 people like this
Posted by Scottie Zimmerman
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 17, 2015 at 11:19 am

I am pleased that Buena Vista has a good chance to survive. I'm a knee-jerk liberal, and it would seem tragic for that small neighborhood community to be lost. They have demonstrated their commitment to each other and to Palo Alto. They have quietly defied the odds for years, existing on minimum wage, sharing child care among themselves, valuing education, contributing quietly to our city as good citizens. Congratulations to Joe Simitian and Winter Dellenbach for their hard work, and to the residents of Buena Vista.


10 people like this
Posted by Bill
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 17, 2015 at 11:20 am

> He said he would continue to work to save the park "until the day comes when we can go to a ribbon-cutting for 170 units of affordable housing."

I'm pretty sure he said 117 units, which is the total number at the site now. The story was written by Sue Dremann, so accuracy and fact checking isn't her greatest strength. In fairness, both numbers might sound similar in noisy conversation

> They will own the property, right?

The details haven't been made public, but Smitian said that Caritas will own the property with deed restrictions on keeping site as affordable housing. Affordable housing funds would be turned over to Caritas to save the mobile home park. The City and County would have no interest in the site. Because they would own the land, Caritas would be able obtain the $10 million bond for park improvements and upgrades.

> Didn't the owner say it's NOT for sale! Just curious what makes the city think it can buy it.

The property is definitely for sale and there are multiple parties with strong interest. The owner's original plan was to keep part of the property, but now everything's potentially for sale. When "luxury apartments" were planned, the owner saw an upside to owning an adjacent parcel. If it stays a mobile home park, there's less upside for him. That's part of what's driving the $55 million valuation.

> Wasn't it the Barron Park residents who pushed to get the "residentialists" to dominate City Council?

Berman and Wolbach made the last motion for the City's additional $6.5 million at the end of June. The Council vote approving it was unanimous.There's broad support for making an offer, but for different reasons. For the establishment in north Palo Alto, purchasing the park would put less pressure on building affordable housing in their part of town.

The Palo Alto location and large lot size are driving the breathtaking cost of purchasing the park. For example, Mountain View just built Studio 819 on Rengstorff and Old Middlefield with 49 low income apartments for $18 million. But, Studio 819 is only 0.8 of an acre and three stories. So, there are better ways to spend $39 million, but that isn't the kind of thing Council and Simitian want to do with Buena Vista.


15 people like this
Posted by Becky Sanders
a resident of Ventura
on Aug 17, 2015 at 11:47 am

We have a real problem here in Silicon Valley. The pressures to develop and the understandable desire to make the largest profit on investment are causing a "future shock shift" in our community. These changes are happening faster than we can absorb them. Low and middle income families who have lived in the Valley of the Heart's Delight for generations are falling faster than bowling pins before the wrecking ball of investors, who as I indicated, definitely have a legitimate claim. The rights of property owners to dispose of their property as they see fit is not in dispute here.

However, lawmakers can't move fast enough to find a smooth way to handle this pendulum swing away from reasonably-paced development to runaway development that crushes entire neighborhoods and demographics.

Lawmakers, however, do respond to grassroots pressures for reform. The Friends of Buena Vista is a classic grassroots movement that reminds us that laws may be laws but that doesn't make them right or fair. Times change and laws don't change with them and may not serve the best interest of the people. However one thing that doesn't change: the power of the purse often trumps the power of the people. But in a Democracy at its best, all viewpoints are considered and all our asked to compromise. A grassroots movement reminds us that a Democracy must serve all interests, not just the interests of those who have the economic power.

Yes, the Jisser family as owners, have the rights of property owners. But there are considerations happening now, that the law does not provide for. Grassroots movements are by their very nature disruptive and designed to call attention to where the system is failing to serve the greater good. The interests of all people to be heard and have their voices and lives count for something is worth slowing down (not eliminating) the Jisser Family claiming its profits. They will still get their money, but the interests of all Palo Altans will have been served -- if the public-private partnership can hold the line.

I know the Nay Sayers feel we are wasting taxpayer money, but taxpayers started the movement, so I don't understand that logic. These taxpayers say they want their money to go to preserving an entire neighborhood and demographic. These taxpayers are saying they value the contribution these neighbors bring to our community. If the deal goes through, what a great experiment to behold. Why not try something different? Because if we do things the same old way, we know that current business and development practices in Palo Alto will pretty much pave over the history and lives of the people who built this great city.

And a final consideration, where will it stop? Whose neighborhood is next? Which apartment complex will be next? Will it be yours? Will it be mine? If we take a stand now, we can preserve what we have.

During the great reform movement in Britain, even the most conservative and reactionary statesmen realized the need to reform in order to preserve what we have (Macaulay). We need our institutions to serve us and not the other way around. This is a great opportunity to reform in order to preserve our precious Democracy.




6 people like this
Posted by Robert Smith
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 17, 2015 at 12:02 pm

My biggest hope is that the city and the community will show some respect for Mr. Jisser. He was treated badly.

At least the city has shouldered some responsibility for low-income housing.


3 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 17, 2015 at 12:18 pm

"For the establishment in north Palo Alto, purchasing the park would put less pressure on building affordable housing in their part of town."

Bull.


Like this comment
Posted by R Wray
a resident of Palo Verde
on Aug 17, 2015 at 12:24 pm

I used to have sympathy with Jisser's property rights, but he is quoted in the WSJ that he feels he has a moral obligation to the trailer camp residents. If he feels that way, he should have integrity and just give them the place. The tax payers need not be involved.


3 people like this
Posted by Gale Johnson
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Aug 17, 2015 at 2:37 pm

@ Agenda,

Yes, that confused me also. What the heck is "a soft offer" anyway and who is the 'we" she refers to? I doubt if it's Friends of BV so it must be Caritas Corp and that kind of ties her in if her statements are correctly reported.


3 people like this
Posted by Gale Johnson
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Aug 17, 2015 at 2:46 pm

@ stoidI,

I second your hope. I won't stay up until 1 AM to watch it but I do hope the meeting gets reported accurately online tomorrow. How we could come this far and taken so long and still not know the real true total cost for us PA citizens is mindboggling.


7 people like this
Posted by Gale Johnson
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Aug 17, 2015 at 3:12 pm

I'll bet you folks really missed me. lol I was on a two week trip to my home state of Montana.

@ GoneOnTooLong

Yes, of course, they argued very hard, strong and long, that it was builders' fee money, not taxpayer money. Well, now the jig is up, and they're having to confess that tax payers dollars will be required to save it. It will require digging into city funds that are taxpayer dollars. Oh, that wonderful way of getting those funds by rezoning, and rezoning, and rezoning again. I'm getting dizzy thinking about it. But I'm sure all this will happen and we'll save the park at a very high cost, yet to be determined. And it will still be a junkyard of mobile homes, RV's etc...I apologize to you BV folks for those words because I know you love and are happy and proud of your homes, but if the city and county got their heads on straight we could provide all of you nice modern up to code apartments. I would even vote for a bond to raise extra money to make that happen.


2 people like this
Posted by AllenE
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 17, 2015 at 3:17 pm

AllenE is a registered user.

Isn't this money paid not from taxes but from developer fees for low income housing? Isn't this by far the cheapest low income housing project ever proposed? Why all the bitching?


13 people like this
Posted by Slow Down
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 17, 2015 at 3:33 pm

Slow Down is a registered user.

@ AllenE - to answer your second question, which might inform the answer to your third: No, this isn't the cheapest low income housing project ever proposed. Per resident, it is one of the most expensive (and dumbest) low income housing projects ever proposed.


4 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 17, 2015 at 3:36 pm

"if the city and county got their heads on straight we could provide all of you nice modern up to code apartments."

Maybe, but would our city bigshots still get that free posole?


6 people like this
Posted by Palo Alto Taxpayer
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 17, 2015 at 9:03 pm

Let's change the Prop 13 status of all rental properties and use the taxes from wealthy landlords to pay for the Buena Vista boondoggle so Palo Altans can feel good


1 person likes this
Posted by Joe BP
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 17, 2015 at 10:22 pm

When Caritas redevelop this site, where will the residents live? There is no other affordable housing in Barron Park for them to live, so who is going to pay for their temporary housing? How will their kids get to Barron Park schools which is the foundation for them wanting to remain in the park?


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Posted by Joe
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 18, 2015 at 1:31 pm

Not for sale is the the word on the street. All this talk for nothing.


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Posted by Robert Smith
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 18, 2015 at 3:23 pm

Joe,

Can you provide more details?


Thanks.


4 people like this
Posted by Wally
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 18, 2015 at 7:40 pm

It's so easy to be high standing and moral, with other peoples money, isn't it?


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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