Santa Barbara's Affordable Housing Scam
By Ernie Salomon
No city, including SB can build itself into affordable housing and into prosperity. The more housing that is built, the more people will come here and the more demand for housing, city services, welfare and more congestion too, even as our idiot planners ordain that new housing units will bring less cars.
The AUD program is a fraud! The recent article in the independent shows a picture of the AUD program Mark complex at State and La Cumbre. Here, a one bedroom apartment goes for $2,900 a month. To afford this one bedroom, an income of about $120,000 a year is required. How many single people or couples in Santa Barbara who even want to live in this building, which resembles an institution inside, make $120,000 a year?
Just for whom are these AUD units and any other "affordable" units being built? The only way that an affordable housing program could work would be to reserve any new such housing for local residents who have lived here x number of years, but gosh oh gee whiz, they already live here!
In the long run, building these new "affordable" units serves only one purpose; to bring even more people into Santa Barbara, many who cannot afford to live here!
The actions that the mayors, boards of supervisors and councils can do to control the loss of affordable housing by local workers, they have not! Thousands of foreign and out of state students at SBCC who have no legal right to be there and even UCSB have robbed local workers of the ability to live here by forcing their evictions. Kaplan, EF and the other language schools who bring in thousands of foreigners take local's housing as well. So do vacation rentals!
The bitter fact is that if you cannot afford to live where you live or want to live, then you have to move to a second choice or even third choice city. Most people cannot afford a $20,000,000 home and a private 747 and a 300 foot yacht. People have to adjust to their means. Those who commute to work here or have moved out of the coastal high rent area have adjusted to their financial realities. It is not their choicest way to live, but this is the system we have. It has absolutely nothing to do with race or ethnic origin, it has everything to do with housing demand versus supply. The demand is great to live here and the supply of housing cannot keep up and never will. This will continue to force rents up.
Too many people want to live in California's coast with its extremely high rents. The only answer for the California Coast is the San Joaquin Valley Bullet Train. This would begin a new land and job rush and prosperity for those who cannot afford to live on the coast to the valley.