PRO & CONS – Prop C – November 8, 2016

PROPOSITION C – LOANS TO FINANCE ACQUISITION AND REHABILITATION OF AFFORDABLE HOUSING

Ordinance

Placed on the ballot by the Board of Supervisors

Requires a 2/3 vote for passage

THE QUESTION:

Shall the City expand the use of the 1992 general obligation bond to allow up to $260,700,000 in remaining funds as loans that finance the acquisition, improvement and rehabilitation of at-risk multi-unit residential buildings that would convert such structures such structures to permanent affordable housing?

BACKGROUND:

In November 1992, San Francisco voters approved an ordinance authorizing the City to issue up to $350 million in general obligation bonds to seismically upgrade unreinforced masonry buildings that are at risk from strong earthquakes. The City was required to use the money from these bonds for:

  • $150 million to provide loans to pay for seismic upgrades to unreinforced masonry buildings for affordable housing (Affordable Housing Loan Program); and
  • $200 million to provide loans to pay for seismic upgrades to market-rate residential, commercial and institutional unreinforced masonry buildings (Market Rate Loan Program).

The City has issued approximately $45 million in loans under the Affordable Housing Loan Program and approximately $50 million in loans under the Market Rate Loan Program. Approximately $261 million can still be issued under the 1992 ordinance.

THE PROPOSAL:

This ordinance would change the way the City is allowed to use the remaining $261 million in general obligation bonds. In addition to the purposes specified in the 1992 ordinance, Proposition C would allow funds to be used for loans to acquire, improve and rehabilitate at-risk multi-unit residential buildings in need of seismic, fire, health or safety upgrades or other major rehabilitation; and to convert those buildings to permanent affordable housing.

A multi-unit residential building is a building with three or more units.

A “YES” Vote Means: You want to allow the City to spend the unused $261 million from the 1992 general obligation bond ordinance to provide loans to acquire, improve and rehabilitate at-risk multi-unit residential buildings in need of seismic, fire, health or safety upgrades or other major rehabilitation; and to convert those buildings to permanent affordable housing.

A “NO” Vote Means: You do not want to make these changes.

ARGUMENTS IN FAVOR OF PROP C

  • Proposition C would create new, permanently affordable housing.
  • This measure could stabilize housing costs for families living in at-risk housing purchased through Prop C funds.

ARGUMENTS AGAINST PROP C

  • Proposition C would increase the cost of government.
  • The bonds could fund the displacement of residents by private landlords.

 

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