Editor,

Housing is one of Californians’ top concerns in 2022. Every candidate running for political office talks about affordable housing, but few present real solutions that differ from the status quo.

But voters can make a real difference. James Coleman differs from all the other candidates in the race, platforming the need to build “social housing” — permanently affordable housing that maximizes community benefit, not profits for private developers. This housing would be built by our cities, nonprofits and community land trusts, with every dollar invested back into the community, ensuring local control. Our communities would be able to dictate the terms of the housing being built, including the design standards and affordability.

James Coleman doesn’t just talk about building social housing; he’s actively doing it. He’s leading the South San Francisco City Council to place an Article 34 measure on the ballot for November, which would lift a statewide ban on the city’s ability to build their own affordable housing. Under James’ leadership, SSF is expecting more than $100 million in affordable housing funds — without taxing a single resident.

Unlike others, James doesn’t rubber stamp every development that comes across his desk. I’ve seen him fight for — and win — better labor standards, better environmental standards and deeper levels of affordability in the housing being built. James is also the only major candidate not taking massive donations from private developers.

It’s time for real solutions. It’s time to build housing for the people. It’s time for James Coleman.

Ashwin Vasant

Foster City

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(2) comments

Dirk van Ulden

Dear Ashwin - you need to get away from this non-profit banter. I can guarantee you that in the end 'for profit' developers can build much more efficiently than the so-called non-profits that use liberal tax write-offs to close the funding gaps. Who do you think is paying for that loss of tax revenue? Also, all materials, regardless of who buys them have a profit motive or they would not be produced. I agree that more affordable housing must be built but by bringing in real experts, not do-gooders or sentimentalists, can we arrive at a housing crisis solution that works for all. Of course, politicians should be kept away but your candidate would not want to miss an opportunity to make a name for himself.

edkahl

You're absolutely right - the efficiency and expertise of private sector contractors can build housing for far less than the government.

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