Increasing our stock of affordable homes will improve the health of our community.
The cost of housing in Emeryville, like most of the state, is unaffordable for the average working household. Home ownership in California is at an all-time low and many families are spending over 50% of their monthly income on rent alone.
With the loss of Redevelopment Agencies, cities like Emeryville lost an important financial tool that helped cultivate small business growth and build affordable homes for families with lower or moderate incomes. In the absence of those funds, cities must innovate to ensure that future development preserves a balance that makes our community accessible to everyone. This is not just fiscally important but important to the unique cultural identity of our community and the greater Bay Area.
Affordable homes make it easier for people who have hourly or minimum wage jobs, a fast-growing sector of our workforce, to live closer to where they work. This can reduce the number of people in-commuting to our city each day, reducing the traffic, noise and pollution that undermine public health. Mixed-income residential developments integrate all cross-sectors of our community, improving public safety, building community and creating social stability.
If elected to City Council, I promise to prioritize local and regional opportunities to create new housing for all people, diversify the affordability of our new and emerging housing stock and create stronger legal protections for long-time tenants and homeowners who are vulnerable to displacement due to their source of income, disability or age.
As our city grows, so too must our awareness of how development impacts public safety.
Emeryville has experienced significant growth over the past two decades. These changes require us to innovate and adapt in order to keep our community livable, healthy and safe.
New construction means greater density and a greater demand for local services. Residential and commercial growth has significantly impacted our transit and fire safety infrastructure. The city is engaged in a number of evaluations that will go a long way to addressing current need.
If elected, I commit to planning for the years to come; to optimizing our transit infrastructure so that mass transit and green transit are attractive and competitive alternatives to carbon-based models; and ensuring that as our region evolves toward those goals we evaluate infrastructure investments with an eye toward the future.
Livable communities promote local-hire, local-serving retail and goods.
Like many residents, I am committed to supporting local establishments. These are the places that give our community its identity. The owners and employees of these places contribute significantly to the vibrancy of our community. The ability to “shop local” is part of creating a sustainable, family-friendly Emeryville for residents and visitors alike.
The cost of opening and operating a business in Emeryville has become almost prohibitive. Commercial rents are at an all-time high and most small businesses operate on razor thin margins that make sustaining through the first six to twelve months of operation challenging for many.
I would like the city to explore opportunities that make Emeryville a more attractive place for small business owners. In partnership with the small business community, I want to help identify ways in which the city can help these local-serving businesses thrive.