By Michael Shaw
Posted June 28, 2005
It is ironic that “progressive” Santa Cruz politicians and other politicians throughout America are neck deep in a public/private partnership scams that destroys neighborhoods at taxpayer expense.
Over the last 30 years the Santa Cruz County political machine has worked to prevent the construction of homes. In 2004 the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors granted massive zoning powers to the Planning Director. Supposedly this was done in order to solve the “emergency housing crisis.” That crisis was created by the same political machine that is pretending to solve the problem today.This “housing crisis” is to be cured with the construction of 10,000 housing units built on transportation corridors (rail and bus lines) by government “partners” (non-profits and compliant developers = Sustainable Developers). What makes certain people “partners” is their willingness to build housing that imposes government conditions on the lives of the residents. The conditions will include requirements for “water masters,” “utility masters,” auto use restrictions, occupancy limitations (including permits for visitor stays), on site government indoctrination child care centers, etc. This is being called “affordable housing.” This new housing stock is taxpayer subsidized. This housing is subject to County Housing Authority determinations of who can live there and how much they pay. In the case of sold units, the Authority determines both purchase and resale prices. one can expect rules and more rules for those who live there.
For the last 15 years the newly appointed Santa Cruz County Planning Director headed the “Advance Planning Department.” His work appears to have focused on developing the county’s Sustainable Development program on a parcel by parcel basis. Un-favored property owners were given a “stick” so that property ownership would end up in the hands of insiders who would then be given tax funded grants and zoning “carrots.”
A county’s best methodology for maintaining local control is simply not to participate in Sustainable Development programs and the federal funding that comes with it. A county’s best methodology for maintaining integrity is to remove from office the policy makers who accept federal and state money for Sustainable Development programs. In Santa Cruz County the present focus of the Sustainable Developers is the government’s acquisition of the rail line. Rails, trails and buses are to become the common man’s transportation system for the new order in a post private property era. This was the real purpose of Santa Cruz’s Measure J transportation plan. Stack ’em, pack ’em and put them on a train.It is ironic “progressive” Santa Cruz politicians are neck deep in a right wing government/private partnership scam that destroys neighborhoods at taxpayer expense. My friend was right; it is like Russia; except that Lenin and Stalin did not have enough money and were not this sophisticated.
The New World Order: Combining Transportation and Housing “Policy” by Michael Shaw
Michael Shaw is a political economist and an Abundance ecologist. He is the proprietor of Liberty Garden and is a director of Freedom 21 Santa Cruz [now Freedom Advocates].