BCA Steering Committee Does NOT Support Measure L, the Housing and Infrastructure Bond
We DO NOT SUPPORT Bond Measure L.
This measure would raise $650 million through general obligation bonds to be issued over a 48-year bond period to build affordable housing, repair streets and sidewalks, underground utilities on evacuation routes, and improve buildings, infrastructure, and safety.
We oppoose the measure as much of the funds to be raised are designed to pay for city infrastructure repair that should occur as a part of regular city maintenance.
Berkeley needs funds for affordable housing and we applaud the city auditor’s report showing the huge cost of repairing streets after they become dIlapidated. But this bond will take 48 years to be paid off, while streets must be repaired every 10-15 years. City projections show the cost of the $650 million bond will balloon to $1.2 billion by payoff.
This measure, which mashed what would have been two separate funding measures, preventing voters from making independent decisions about priorities and eliminating the possibility of low-income or senior exemptions as these are only legal for parcel taxes and not general obligation bonds. This largest bond issue in Berkeley’s history lacks specifics, planning and real oversight. Read more here: bit.ly/NO_on_L, and here.
Berkeley’s maintenance of the city’s infrastructure has long been deficient, and ignored due to city mismanagement. Measure L is just a band-aid that does not address the basic issue, the need for better maintenance of the city’s infrastructure every year with better city management.