Important Issues for LA City
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affordable housingAffordable Housing
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Hi, I’m Connie Saunders and I’m running for Council District 7 in its 2017 election.   

   My intentions are to forward plans to handle several ruinous situations Los Angeles has while establishing changes to create a more stable environment for future growth and prosperity.  There are several ruinous problems and simple solutions that I want to go over with you today and I promise there will be more to come! 

   Our US and California constitutions should be simple, but are often ignored.  This can and has gotten the City into trouble.  By way of example, just a few weeks ago Los Angeles City settled a lawsuit by paying 200 Million dollars.   

   This lawsuit settlement (on August 30, 2016) was made necessary due to LA’s failure to provide ways and means for a sufficient amounts of affordable housing.  The biggest problem creating this situation was and still is LA’s archaic zoning ordinances which do not provide ample codes to allow for tiny homes, which could be an affordable housing solution for many of the homeless.

   Homelessness has risen by 20% in the past two years alone and is up to a record high of 26,000 homeless.

   Our district has seen a huge rise in homeless settlements, causing fires and need for hasmet suited teams of people to continually go in to clean up such areas. 

   This is trouble to our residents and encroaches on our rights, and theirs, as so much can be effectively done about this, but isn’t. 

 I would like to begin with a quote from the California Constitution:

   “SECTION 1. 

All people are by nature free and independent and have inalienable rights. Among these are enjoying and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing, and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining safety, happiness, and privacy” 

   All of the below issues, violate this constitution to one degree or other.

Zoning: As stated earlier and affirmed in the 200 Million dollar settlement, we have a distinct lack of affordable housing. Jerry Brown just made this easier with signing of Senate Bill 1069, making ‘granny homes’ easier to make – by taking away rights to utilities to charge exorbitant fees for new hookups and allowing 1069 to supercede existing codes in any City, where their codes haven’t been changed yet.  We’ll have to see how this plays out on January 1st when it is to go into effect.  But certainly this helps homeowners to build an add on home on their property, or should. 

   Currently we are lacking ordinances for other solutions, including Pre-fab tiny home communities, container homes.  easy to construct minimalistic boarding homes right on our bus corridors, to allow better ease for people accessing our public transportation when needing a job (such as the 26,000 homeless we currently have). 

  Rather than investments in more temporary ‘shelter’ housing, such as that which was done last year, we need to get these homeless positioned so that they can easily look for and get jobs.  Encourage it, with special plans that if conformed with along Van Nuys Blvd, for instance, will get a fast flow treatment at Building and Safety.  Such should have wireless available for all, as an idea.  These kind of special boarding homes can also be set up for Seniors, allowing these guys to get and keep affordable housing.  This will be key for the baby boomers. 

  Also our city is remiss in not creating Tiny Home zoning or “R-3 Eco” zoning for Tiny home communities.  Other States are doing this; we need to keep up.  This type of zoning should be developed for 1 acre or greater lots.  An example of what is meant by this could be that any owner may apply for rezoning who owns one acre or more of continuous land in a residentially zoned area.  You wouls want to spread this out, so in my opinion, no requirement should be placed on getting re-zoned, provided all who are within 500 feet of said acreage are given notice, giving them time and place to protest, type thing. 

   Size limits for Tiny Homes shall be no less than 320 square feet, but can be two stories with roof loft, type thing, so it can be more roomy than an apartment.  

   With all of this there should be plenty of diverse and affordable housing opportunities for those with limited funds, students, disabled and others just wishing not to have to spend as much on housing as one must do in Los Angeles today. 

  We basically don’t have a minute to spare.  LA just agreed to pay out 200 Million for 4,000 homes to be built in 10 years.  Senate Bill 1069 will certainly help, but to get the 26,000 we have on the streets currently really off the streets and into jobs if they can or into a place where they can survive and we don’t have their encroachment, is going to take diligence. 

   If I become your City Council Member, I will fight to get the housing amendments we need to get to ensure we have abundant housing in this City and no unsightly homeless encampments on our streets, under our bridges and in our parks.  Don’t forget to vote for me, Constance Saunders in our March 7th Primaries and the general election in May.   

 Paid for by the saunders4district7 2017 LA City Council campaign 12661 Gain St., Pacoima CA 91331.
(818) 890-0131
For additional information please go to ethics.lacity.org.