October 20, 2006

Editorial:

Ballot Recommendations on Local Propostions

City of Chula Vista

Proposition F:

Affordable low income rental housing — City of Chula Vista (Majority Approval Required)

Authorize potential development, construction, and/or acquisition of up to 1,600 affordable low income rental housing units?

During the heyday of housing development on the Eastside of Chula Vista low-income housing was provided through a policy known as “inclusionary housing” which required developers to set aside 10 percent of their homes as affordable. New home development has slowed down dramatically, and the future of affordable housing in Chula Vista needs to be addressed.

Proposition F addresses the need for affordable housing by authorizing the City to construct or acquire 1,600 rental housing units for people with low incomes, in Chula Vista that has an income of $55,200 or less for a family of four, a single person is considered low income if their salary is $38,650 or less.

There will be no fiscal impact to the City or added taxes, State or Federal Housing Programs will fund the construction or acquisition of the homes.

We Highly Recommend a Yes Vote on Prop. F

Proposition G & H:

Mayor or Council appointee may not seek election for same office within a year — City of Chula Vista (Charter Amendment - Majority Approval Required)

Prohibits an appointee for Mayor, or City Council from seeking election for the same office for a period of one year following the end of the appointed term.

Proposition G and Propostion H are in reaction to the mess that was created when Chula City council person Patty Davis stepped down from the Council at the end of last year and the position was filled by appointment, a process that was rushed and with no real guidelines. The appointment of Patrica Chavez, a virtual unknown at that point in time, was a back room deal that circumvented a logical appointment process. Prop. G and H will clear up the process and define how the process will occur.

One of the biggest problems with the appointment process is that it immediately applies the title of incumbent on the appointee, and in Chula Vista an incumbent has never lost a re-election race, giving the appointed person an unfair advantage. Proposition G states that a person appointed to fill a City Council position or mayor, may not run for that office for one year once that term is completed.

We agree with this premise and support Prop. G.

Propostion H states that if a vacancy occurs on the Chula Vista City Council or with the mayor’s office and there is less than a year left in the term of office, the vacancy must be filled in 45 days by appointment or election. If not filled within 45 days, the seat shall be left vacant. If the vacated position has more than a year left in the term of office than the seat shall be filled by Special Election. This gets a little tricky if there is a year and a day left in the term of office, by the time a special election is held and the $330,000 to 400,000 price tag is paid, the term of office will be well less than a year with yet another election around the corner. We would feel more comfortable in supporting this proposition if the language read something like - a special election will be held after the election if there is still at least a year left in the term of office. Despite our misgivings on this point, after the last appointment process it is clear that direction is needed in the appointment process and for this reason we support Prop. H.

Vote Yes On Proposition H

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