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Smart Fixes for the Bay Area’s Housing Crisis

In a letter to the editor of the San Francisco Chronicle, LISC CEO Maurice Jones urges support for policies and development that can solve the crisis of affordable housing, and housing affordability, in the hot Bay Area market.

The letter below was originally published on the San Francisco Chronicle:
Letters to the Editor, Sept. 28

Support smart policies

Regarding City’s ‘missing middle’ squeezes home buyers (Sept. 17): Kathleen Pender’s article about middle-income families squeezed out of the Bay Area housing market illustrates why we so badly need innovative local, state and federal policies and bold, strategic community investments that promote an array of housing options, embracing people of diverse income levels.

The Legislature’s passage last week of six more housing bills is a giant step in the right direction, as Californians face a dearth of both affordable housing and housing affordability.

In the article, Trevor McNeil, a father of three, describes his wife’s reluctance to leave San Francisco, though the family of five is crammed into a one-bedroom apartment: “My wife’s world is her community.”

That is the sentiment of so many Bay Area residents who can no longer afford to live where their lives are rooted. We don’t believe anyone, regardless of income, should have to face that predicament. If we support smart policies and development initiatives that promote a range of rental and homeownership opportunities, they don’t have to. And our neighborhoods will be the richer for it.

Maurice Jones, CEO, Local Initiatives Support Corp., Oakland

Read the original letter [+]...