City gives up affordable housing fees


San Mateo will forgo millions of dollars in developer-paid fees to address the affordable housing crisis in a move the city’s mayor called shocking and hypocritical.

Just months after approving linkage fees commercial developers would pay to help offset the impacts to the regional housing crisis, the city was asked to make concessions and provide a discount for five projects. Staff and the majority of the council described amendment to the city’s ordinance as a clarification and in fairness to developers that already had projects in the pipeline when the new fees were approved.

But Mayor David Lim said he was shocked and opposed to “spot legislation” that would cater to just a handful of developers.

“I know this is strong language, but it’s basically kowtowing to developers. We’re going to lose $2.9 million to $3.9 million that we could use for affordable housing,” Lim said. “I think this is one of the worst decisions I’ve ever seen the council make.”

San Mateo’s rental rates keep rising


Reports: Most expensive in area with growth outpacing rest of the nation It is shaping up to be a long, hot summer for San Mateo renters as monthly fees due to landlords ticked up by nearly 4 percent in last year, continuing a steady incline for the past six months, according to a recent report. … Continue reading San Mateo’s rental rates keep rising

Letter: Affordable housing to take back seat in Burlingame again?


Burlingame’s City Council will vote late on Monday evening, July 3, whether to accept the terms in an agreement with Topgolf, an entertainment facility that is planned to be built on Bayfront property. The site is public land — former landfill and unsuitable for housing. By state law, if it were suitable, the land would have to be offered to affordable housing developers. We assert that the revenue from renting the land should by all rights be put into an affordable housing fund.

California lawmakers have tried for 50 years to fix the state’s housing crisis. Here’s why they’ve failed


After an hour of debate, Herb Perez had had enough.

Perez, a councilman in the Bay Area suburb of Foster City, was tired of planning for the construction of new homes to comply with a 50-year-old state law designed to help all Californians live affordably.

Higher prices squeezing both renters, would-be homeowners


A diminished supply of available homes is swelling prices in large U.S. metro areas from New York to Miami to Los Angeles, squeezing out would-be buyers and pushing up rents as more people are forced to remain tenants. – See more.