Sunday Commentary: Can We Forge Community Consensus to Solve Our Revenue Crisis?

Dec-SR-2

We live in a beautiful community that we cannot afford to pay for with existing revenues.  We must understand and recognize the unpleasant truth behind that statement in order to meet the challenges that await us as a community in the next decade.

My analysis is that something is going to have to change in this community – and we are all going to have to give a little.  Yesterday I laid out four possible ways forward – each of which appear to be premised on a non-starter for some in the community.

Can we increase our net retail sales in Davis?  How do we do that?  Do we expand retail opportunities?  Do we re-invigorate the dispersed economic development model as laid out in the Studio 30 report?  Do we go the tax route?  Do we implement a multi-faceted approach that borrows from each of these?

Within the framework of each of these is a critical question: Measure R.  Some believe that no project can pass given the parameters of Measure R and that there is a core in the community willing to oppose any project.

Others are more hopeful.  They point to the near success of Nishi and argue that a better project could pass. While Nishi had more to offer than other projects, they believed it still had flaws that could have been overcome with time and effort.

There is good news – no one in the comments seemed to believe we didn’t face a problem here.  That is a big step forward, though the community itself remains largely in the dark as to the peril we face.  It suggests that, with a concerted effort, we can educate the community about our moment of crisis.

At the same time, I want to highlight some points made by Matt Williams.  I put out a figure of $3000 per year parcel tax as one alternative which seemed to cover the needs of both schools and the city.  But Matt Williams is clearly concerned that it is a low number.

The $1700 parcel tax is premised on the belief that we need about $32 million in additional annual funding to meet current infrastructure needs.  However, he writes, “Given the recent investment return report from CalPERS, that $32 million per year is likely to go up another $5-7 million.”

He continues with a point I was hoping to raise through yesterday’s column, saying that “unless our community gets ‘honest’ with itself, we won’t make informed (dare I say wise) decisions.”

He writes that “the unfunded portion of the $10 million per year for the next 20 years for Roads and Bike paths is only 28.4% of the Staff-reported unfunded liability total.”

Matt Williams cites Footnote 12 of the 2015 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) reports: “For the year ended June 30, 2015, the City recognized pension expense of $3,891,011” as well as an additional “$3,935,948 […] recognized as a reduction of the net pension liability in the year ended June 30, 2016.” 

That is $7,826,959 total,” he writes.  “For discussion purposes, if CalPERS follows the same pattern of Employer Contribution escalation as CalSTRS (from 8.25% to 19.1%), then the 2020 pension contribution could be as high as $18 million.”

Or, as he put it later, “it is not unreasonable to expect the current $114 million combined PERS and OPEB unfunded liability to double, and the annual contribution required by PERS to increase substantially as well.  If both of those things happen $3,000 will be a low number (with anything that DJUSD needs being over and above that).”

Is that a worst case scenario?  Perhaps.  But it illustrates the very real problem we face as a community.

There are those who believe we can still solve the problem through austerity and cuts.  When you are dealing with figures of $32 million in a budget that is about $56 million or so for the general fund portion, you just are not going to make those kinds of cuts without taking out huge swaths of the very city services and amenities that make our community Davis and that we are trying to save.

We are not going to solve this problem with one round of revenue increases, thus I don’t support the $3000 parcel tax.

Instead, I think we each have to be honest with ourselves about what the task is ahead of us.

The fact is that we are facing the real possibility of not being able to meet our roads and bike path needs.  Are we as a community willing to shut down our bike path network?

We need to face the real possibility that we cannot afford the upkeep on our parks – are we willing to shut down our parks?

We need to face the real possibility that we won’t be able to maintain our swimming pools – do we want more closures?

We need to face the real possibility that we won’t be able to maintain our greenbelt network – should we shut that down?  Potentially sell it to developers?

If the answer is no to those, then I think we need to re-examine what we are willing to do.  Are we willing to add retail and research parks?  Are we willing to approve some Measure R projects in hopes that we can maintain the great aspects of our community on the one hand, but preserve the ag and open space that we all appreciate?

Can we get creative and find ways to drive business and jobs to this community, not only to generate more tax revenue, but to get people here to actually buy products that will improve our economy and generate more taxes themselves?

I don’t want to go a $3000 parcel tax, but it is clear we need more immediate revenue while we are hopefully building for the future.

We have been comparing Davis to San Luis Obispo in hopes of better understanding our community.  Here is another piece of the puzzle – San Luis Obispo generated $6.8 million in TOT (Transient Occupancy Tax) in 2014-15.  They describe their effort: “much of this success can be credited to the city’s focused strategic tourism efforts…”

No one is saying that Davis can become San Luis Obispo here, but Davis can be a destination of sorts if it focuses on strategic tourism efforts as well.  Davis can be the epicenter of conferences and university and tech-inspired tourism that can bring money to the coffers.

As I said yesterday, I still believe that the vision of the Studio 30 report is largely correct, but, given the magnitude of the crisis, I think we can do more on the traditional retail front than we are doing.

In order to survive, everyone is going to have to compromise on a solution – that means giving on something.  The community must come together to figure out what that is and what they want this community to look like, not in 50 years, but in ten.  The crisis is now, it is upon us now and we must act today.

—David M. Greenwald reporting

About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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166 Comments

  1. Barack Palin

    I don’t want to go a $3000 parcel tax

    It doesn’t matter what you might want or not want, the community will never approve to what basically ammounts to a doubling of our our current parcel taxes.  I agree that it’s going to take a combination of several things and a new parcel tax will be one of the fixes, but only one of $200 to $300 will have a chance of passing.

  2. Barack Palin

    Here’s an example where someone has to give, I just read this in the Enterprise:

    http://www.davisenterprise.com/local-news/concerns-surround-hyatt-house-proposal/

    That would be a great location for a hotel and supply the city with much needed revenue.  I feel the neighbor’s concern is off base in this case as it would be located on a main business road and there’s already a hotel just down the road.  Here’s an example where the council has to step up and tell the concerned citizens to pound sand.

    1. Barack Palin

      A second extended-stay hotel also has been proposed at 4647 Fermi Place on a site across from the Target store on Second Street. Marriott is proposing to build a four-story, 120-room Residence Inn; that site also would require a General Plan amendment for zoning changes

      The council needs to also approve this.  The site on Cowell says it will generate “upwards of $700,000 in revenue for the city annually and approximately $2 million in one-time city fees” so if the site on Fermi has the same numbers we are already looking at $4 million in one time fees and $1.4 annually.  That’s a good start towards what we need.

      1. Ron

        BP:

        Not trying to dispute your point, but I did read this in the Enterprise, today (last paragraph):

        “Following a hotel market analysis performed earlier this year, consultants found that the city’s hotel market has room for one extended-stay hotel, alongside the already approved Embassy Suites hotel/conference center planned for 1111 Richards Blvd. at Olive Drive.”

        Perhaps there isn’t a sufficient market for two extended-stay hotels?

        http://www.davisenterprise.com/local-news/concerns-surround-hyatt-house-proposal/

         

        1. Mark West

          Go read the analysis Ron, the summary in the paper is not accurate.  The demand is present now and is projected to increase over the next couple of years. Since these projects take multiple years to develop and stabilize, we need to be approving today the projects that will be needed 3-5 years down the road. The analysis shows that both of the proposed extended stay projects and the convention center will be needed within that time frame. These are high-value projects for the community and will have a very positive impact on our fiscal future.

    2. Grok

      Personally I have no problem with a person saying not in my back yard on something like this Hyatt House proposal. Lets be clear on what is being proposed. Currently the land is zoned for a less than 3 story business park use. The proposal is to change the zoning on the parcel to allow for a 4 story hotel. The parcel is relatively small and is immediately adjacent to the back fences of a residential neighborhood. Go look at Google Maps and see for yourself.

      https://www.google.com/maps/@38.5458612,-121.7202391,506m/data=!3m1!1e3

      This new proposal will double the hieght of the building and at the new height the building will loom over the existing houses and half the guest rooms will have a view of the adjacent houses back yards.

      It is highly unfair to the home owners to change the zoning of the adjacent properties in a way that will materially effect the quality of their lives and value of their homes.

      The proposed Marriott site by Target seems more appropriate, but I would need more information to say so definitely.

       

      1. Barack Palin

        Looking at the map I really don’t see a problem.  There’s already three adjacent businesses and a tree lined bike/walking path that would be located between the backyards and the hotel.  Maybe they can scale down the project to keep it at three stories.

        1. hpierce

          a tree lined bike/walking path

          Read, greenbelt, owned by the City.

          Let’s say 4-5 stories… that would be “horrible”!  That would deprive the residents to the south of their view of the freeway!  And the noise!  And the ‘north wind!  And sunlight [oops, no the sun is to the south, my bad]

          We need to ensure those deleterious effects don’t happen!

        2. Barack Palin

          a tree lined bike/walking path

          Read, greenbelt, owned by the City.

          Okay, a greenbelt with a tree lined bike/walking path.  What’s your point?  It still serves as a buffer between the houses and the hotel development which was my point.

        3. hpierce

          BP… was not criticizing… wanted to reaffirm your point that the greenbelt couldn’t disappear by “whim”… chill… if you turn on those who are supporting you…

          I suspect most in town didn’t know it is a City-owned greenbelt…

      2. Matt Williams

        Grok raises a valid point.  As I noted just a few minutes ago in a response to Marina I believe this Hyatt application is a very good opportunity to see if Davis can actually do a development application process well.  One of the first questions that comes to mind is whether the applicant has done community outreach to the neighbors of the parcel.  Since they are the ones directly affected by the height concerns Grok has raised, it would seem to be imperative to know what they feel.

        Grok, is the height restriction in the current zoning “less than 3 story” or is it “No building or structure shall exceed three stories or thirty-five feet in height”?

        1. Tia Will

          Matt

          I agree that process and community input are key to a project such as the Hyatt. From personal knowledge of the situation ( I have no financial or personal stake in this project nor do I have enough information to take a stand either for or against the project at this point), I can state that there have been multiple attempts to outreach to the community some of which were very poorly attended despite the invitations to the immediate neighborhood.

          As anyone who reads the Vanguard knows, I have been a frequent critic of developers who do not obtain input from the neighboring community prior to presenting their projects to the city. However, the converse also applies in my mind. The community loses credibility with regard to their good will in the process when they do not attend outreach events but choose to react negatively instead of providing their input directly to the developers when asked.

          Ideally, I would favor a process in which both sides are willing to participate in a collaborative process long before a project reaches an advanced stage of planning. It appears to me that the Hyatt developers have attempted appropriate early planning communication and that it would behoove the opponents to discuss their concerns openly with the developers who have already done additional investigations and made some changes based on concerns expressed by community members.

        2. Bill

          The timeline, including outreach efforts, can be found at http://hyattdavis.wpengine.com/.

          To save time, however, here it is in brief:

          Two neighborhood engagement efforts prior to submittal of any planning application to the city:
          Mtg #1:  For residents living directly on the Greenbelt
          Mtg #2:  All residents living within 500 ft of the project site

          A 3rd meeting was held later on for the entire Rose Creek neighborhood, which encompasses approximately 2 square miles.

        3. hpierce

          Bill:  it is Rosecreek, not Rose Creek.

          The Rosecreek subdivisions, together, cover less than 1/3 (am being generous, as I think if I took time to do the actual math, more like 1/5-1/6) of a square mile. Drummond to Pole Line is about one mile.

          Two strikes as to veracity. Re-thinking… one strike…the Rosecreek thing might have innocent…

           

        4. Grok

          Quoting from the enterprise

          As it currently stands, the 2-acre parcel is zoned for business park uses, which don’t include hotels, for buildings less than three stories in height.

        5. Matt Williams

          Thank you Grok.  I suspect the Enterprise will be publishing a “For the Record” correction in the coming days.  Looking at the Zoning Map on the City website, the parcel falls into quadrant P-16 and has a zoning designation of PD 12-87.  Putting the expression PD 12-87 into the search box of the City website produces 15 hits, and those hits confirm that PD 12-87 is part of the Industrial Research Subarea of the broader Business Park land use designation, which is governed by Article 40.19 INDUSTRIAL ADMINISTRATION AND RESEARCH (I-R) DISTRICT of the Municipal Code.

        6. Jim Frame

          The timeline, including outreach efforts, can be found at http://hyattdavis.wpengine.com/.

          Near the bottom of the linked page are some drone videos showing the view from the proposed 4th floor of the hotel looking toward the Rosecreek houses.  The videos put the concerns about neighbor privacy in perspective.

           

        7. Grok

          I spoke with someone in the neighborhood today and it sounds like the application process is off to a rocky start with the neighborhood because meetings have note been well noticed.

        8. Grok

          Near the bottom of the linked page are some drone videos showing the view from the proposed 4th floor of the hotel looking toward the Rosecreek houses.  The videos put the concerns about neighbor privacy in perspective. – Jim

          Jim, there is absolutely no height information on those drone studies and there is no way to validate that they are done at the proper height. Further, they completely neglect to take into account that many of the trees filmed will be cut down or dramatically trimmed according to the tree study which suggests removal or  trimming of up to 35% of the foliage of 16 of the 23 trees.

      3. Mark West

        “Personally I have no problem with a person saying not in my back yard…”

        And herein lies the basic problem with our community’s mindset. Until we ‘get over’ this affliction, we will continue along the pathway to fiscal collapse. The neighbors deserve a voice in the discussion, but they should not have a de facto veto. We need to evolve with the changing environment, and that means accepting changes from our idealized vision of what we each want Davis to be. This should not be a question of deferring to one’s personal wants, but one of addressing our community’s needs.

        1. Tia Will

          This should not be a question of deferring to one’s personal wants, but one of addressing our community’s needs.”

          I am wondering how far you would take this argument. Let’s say that I am a madam by profession in a state in which prostitution is legal. I want to live in California. I manage to gather enough support to make this endeavor legal in California. Now I decide that there is a great market for my services in Davis since Davis has a marked lack of these services and my services will bring in significant funds to the city of Davis. I manage to convince the City Council of the wisdom of changing the zoning in your neighborhood to open my now completely legal business next door to your house. Would you gracefully accept the decision to rezone, or would you have objections that you would take to the City Council ?

          I realize that some readers are going to see this as a ridiculously “extreme” example. However, as someone who does not have a moral objection to mutually agreed upon sexual interactions between consenting adults, I do not share these objections. However, if you tell me that a brothel in your neighborhood is offensive to you, I will respect your point of view just as I would hope that you would respect the desire of others to have privacy in their backyard, or defend the perceived safety of my own neighborhood from increased traffic or anticipated increase in number of strangers potentially behaving in ways that are objectionable to these homeowners.

        2. Mark West

          Tia –

          I have no more interested in your silly games than I did with Don’s. Your advocacy here is an attempt to justify your selfish approach to life, putting your perceived ‘quality of life’ ahead of the needs of the rest of the community. It is time that we start ignoring that sort of selfish nonsense and start paying our bills.

          I would have no problem with any legal business moving in next door to my home if I lived next to a property that was zoned commercial. If someone wanted to change the zoning on the existing property next to my home, I would reserve my right to comment on those plans, but would not expect to be able to veto them. Unless I owned the land and buildings, I should have no expectations of dictating what goes on there.

          We are not talking about a brothel, or a marijuana dispensary, but rather a high-quality business venture that will improve the fiscal health of the City while adding a much-needed service to the community.

        3. Grok

          Mark, I would probably agree with you if the proposal was within what was already zoned for the area but its not. The new hotel requires a significant zoning change. What is being proposed now is very different than what the neighbors would have expected based on the prior zoning. It will adversely effect the neighborhood, the quality of life and the home values. I do believe the neighbors deserve consideration when there is a zoning change like this.

        4. Delia .

          Mark West, imho a dispensary is a high quality business. I know several chemo survivors who are grateful for the appetite enhancing benefits of good quality cannabis, as well as seniors w/ cataracts who have benefitted.

        5. Grok

          Mark, that is an incomplete quote of what I wrote and deceptively changes the meaning.  what I actually wrote is

          Personally I have no problem with a person saying not in my back yard on something like this Hyatt House proposal.

          That is very different. If they were NIMBYing up on something that was within existing zoning I would have a very different point of view. No they are saying not in my back yard on something that will dramatically impact their homes and is outside what they have previously rightly believed to be a possible use of that land. It is very different.

        6. Mark West

          Grok:

          Zoning regulations are guidelines based on what the City thought the land would be used for when the regulations were written years ago. City’s evolve with the current economic conditions by being open to changes to those zoning regulations in order to better reflect the situation today. Suggesting changes to the zoning is an expected and normal course of doing business. The neighbors are justified in asking for mitigation of any impacts brought about by the zoning changes, for instance, increasing the tree buffer to block the view from the upper stories. The rest of their complaints are just nimby nonsense.

      4. Tia Will

        The parcel is relatively small and is immediately adjacent to the back fences of a residential neighborhood. “

        The parcel is actually not “immediately adjacent to the back fences of a residential neighborhood”. There is an intervening green strip and row of relatively tall trees separating the two. What would be interesting to see would be the appropriate drone studies, of which a couple have apparently been done, to see the actual rather than the possible impact of the sight line from the hotel rooms in question and whether or not any mitigations  ( either structural or green barrier) could be considered prior to making a decision on this basis.

      5. Adam Smith

        The hotel use seems no more “harmful” (in some instances, more beneficial)  to the adjacent landowners than several of these permitted or conditional uses that are already provided for by current code.    The top of the hotel roof is set at 42 feet and the top of the parapet wall at 47 feet, lower than the 50 feet provided by code.

        For those interested in the details of what is allowed by code for this parcel, see below:
        The principal permitted uses of land in an I-R district as follows unless modified by Section 40.19.040:
         
        (a)    Administrative, executive and financial offices.
         
        (b)    Laboratories: experimental, film or testing.
         
        (c)    Manufacturing, assembly or packaging of products from previously prepared materials, such as cloth, plastic, paper, leather or semiprecious metals or stones, but not including such operations as saw and planing mills, any manufacturing uses involving primary production of wood, metal or chemical products from raw materials.
         
        (d)    Manufacture of electric and electronic instruments and devices, such as television, radio and phonograph equipment.
         
        (e)    Manufacture of food products, pharmaceuticals and the like, but not including production of fish or meat products, sauerkraut, vinegar or the like, or the rendering or refining of fats and oils.
         
        (f)    Planned unit developments, subject to the provisions of Sections 40.32.010 through 40.32.110.
         
        (g)    Any other research or light manufacturing use determined by the planning commission to be of the same general character as the permitted uses.
         
        (h)    Agriculture, except the raising of fowls or animals for commercial purposes, or the sale of any products at retail on the premises.
        (i)     Sex-oriented entertainment businesses, subject to the requirements of Section 40.26.410. (Ord. 296 § 19.2; Ord. 756 § 1; Ord. 1377 § 3; Ord. 1735 § 2)
        The following conditional uses may be permitted in an I-R district:
         
        (a)    Public and semipublic, including public utility uses necessary and appropriate to the I-R district.
         
        (b)    Retail commercial uses such as restaurants and auto service stations, necessary to serve and appropriate to the I-R district.
         
        (c)    Any use which handles, stores or treats in any fashion hazardous materials as defined in Section 40.01.010 of this chapter.
        (d)    Drive-through facilities, subject to the provisions of Section 40.26.420. (Ord. 296 § 19.4; Ord. 1377 § 4; Ord. 1739 § 8, 1994;
        Height restrictions are as follows:
        No structure shall exceed three stories or fifty feet in height, except as provided in Section 40.27.030, and as greater heights may be permitted for planned unit developments, subject to the provisions of Sections 40.32.010 through 40.32.110. (Ord. 296 § 19.5)

      6. Marina Kalugin

        fairness, does anyone on the developer/realtor/CC side these days care about fairness?  to home owners who did their due diligence prior to plunking down life savings….surely that has become a foreign concept…

        at one time some homeowners not that far from that site, and also in Soda were assured the houses on the other side of the fence were going to be single story…but there was no height maximum specified.   the nearly 3 story vaulted “single story houses” managed to block sunlight and natural light to the existing house, and as a result, some of the wording in the next plan was much more clear…

        after a few of these kinds of things, the same homeowners and friends throughout town got measure J pushed through….very familiar with the many “fun and games” of those who agree to anything only to figure out how to get around it ….

         

        1. Jim Frame

          care about fairness?  to home owners who did their due diligence prior to plunking down life savings

          If those homeowners didn’t know that they could someday have a 50-foot tall building behind their houses, their due-diligence investigations were not, in fact, diligent.

          There are undoubtedly ramifications of the proposed zoning change that bear careful review in light of the neighbors’ complaints, but that doesn’t mean that the project should be rejected out-of-hand.  A fair review is not necessarily inconsistent with project approval.

           

      1. Tia Will

        Frankly

        Selfish.”

        More “selfish” than those who hope to make a personal profit from a development that will enrich them personally but will have no impact on the neighborhood in which they live ?

        1. Mark West

          How exactly is it ‘selfish’ to risk your own money to build a project that addresses specific needs within the community? Do you also think it is selfish of you to earn a personal ‘profit’ from your own work? The developers of many of the projects that have been proposed recently have been members of our community, and would have been just as  impacted by those projects as the rest of us.

        2. Frankly

          “Impact”

          That is a term used quite a bit by you and others that tend to be on the opposition side of most development ideas.

          Mostly these are just emotional responses over aesthetics.  Not really any tangible impacts, just fearful feelings.

          And every opposition to change over fear of impact will result in others being impacted.

          Wouldn’t it be charitable to accept some personal impacts from a change that would benefit others?

          The definition of selfish is “concerned excessively or exclusively with oneself :  seeking or concentrating on one’s own advantage, pleasure, or well-being without regard for others”

          Yup, that fits the Davis NIMBYs.

      2. Grok

        That is not what I wrote Frankly. What I wrote is very different.

        Personally I have no problem with a person saying not in my back yard on something like this Hyatt House proposal.

        1. Grok

          Frankly – On this very thread I pointed out that the proposed location for the Marriott by the Target is a better location for an extended stay hotel. I would like to learn a little more about the project, but I believe that is a project I would support.

          1. David Greenwald

            Unless there is an innovation park across the street at MRIC, I don’t really agree with you that it makes sense to put an extended stay hotel that far from campus.

    3. Bill

      @Grok, to clarify, the proposed Hyatt House proposal complies with the 50′ height limitation. Hyatt is seeking a variance from the limit to the number of stories.

      “No structure shall exceed three stories or fifty feet in height, except as provided in Section 40.27.030, and as greater heights may be permitted for planned unit developments, subject to the provisions of Sections 40.32.010 through 40.32.110. (Ord. 296 § 19.5)”

        1. Matt Williams

          Grok, from the Enterprise article . . .

          “Local developers are proposing to build a 120-room upscale Hyatt House extended-stay hotel at 2750 Cowell Blvd., a vacant parcel adjacent to the Davis Diamonds gym, but the project is already tangled up in controversy.

          The team of five California-based developers — including locals Michael Bisch, Bill Habicht and Gunnet Bajwa, under Presidio Capital Partners LLC.”

  3. Marina Kalugin

    obviously, those who don’t live in South Davis thinks it is a Nimby deal.

    All of the garbage fast food, the auto dealerships, and the massive hotels are dumped in Soda…

    As well as the majority of the “low income” apartment buildings to meet the 25 % affordable housing…(the others are also in the 95618 area code in East Davis)

    One can rarely ever get into town now on Richards…  I don’t even try.

    One cannot get to the UCD over on the 113 side as too much traffic on 80

    One cannot get down 5th st to work, due to construction…and same now 2nd and 8th and now with the Cannery, one has to stop all up and down Covell..

    We, NIMBYs, who moved to Soda in the 80s because we wanted a slower life style…and moved next door to a farm…. now take more than 20 minutes to get any where in town…

    yep, we are all nimbys…we haven’t taken our fair share of what the city council and city planners and so on have dumped all around us for how many years?

    now we have a Starbucks instead of Mocha Joes, no compounding pharmacy, no Tuesday morning…all things we liked….

    we have another goodwill “donation” station…see my other threads on the horrors of goodwill..

    get a clue and get a grip, please..

    we are dying out here..

    our schools are inundated with the children brought in from elsewhere in CA…who are on government services and causing real issues with the “local” elementary schools…

    on the other side of the freeway, those NIMBYs do not deal with the extent of issues we NIMBYs on this side have and continue to deal with, due to continued poor decisions by the CC and city planning and building..

    Of course, some of this is in jest….

    my real friends, who speak out and participate on causes like No on A, No on Nishi are actually all over town…

    some have no children so have more time  to help out…

    some are retired…all are here for decades…

    we have a lovely hotel now on the campus…perhaps this new hotel should go there?

    it won’t impact Richards or any of the other “major arteries” which are too clogged for us on this side of the freeway to even get through on to enjoy…

    faster to get to downtown woodland up pole line for now….

     

     

    1. Delia .

      I used to love the mocha at Cafe Roma (I think that was its name)and chuckled when my 2 kids told me the kids hanging out there were called the Roma rats.

      When the pot dr. was briefly located behind there, I swear at least one or perhaps more vigilantes used to hang out in that area and take pics of everyone who visited the M.D. there. I can’t prove that, but I have a very strong suspicion from the fact I observed a person hanging out there on a regular basuis, who used to look disdainful at each person who visited y that doctor. Totally off topic, I know. Had to vent. Feel free to delete if you want, ♡ VG ediitors. 🙂

      1. Marina Kalugin

        ahh yes, the Cafe Roma…did you know it is alive and well in some other towns…perhaps even SLO? or is it Santa Cruz….

        we are missing places like this now…big business is pushing out the Ma/Pa…

        How did I even miss that MD behind it?

        And,  I bet he got “pushed out” for other reasons….likely though that was a lot of tax dollars, and if the new law takes effect, that would certainly be an easy way to increase revenues.

        See, it was totally on-topic… what a great idea …    🙂   enjoy your Sunday…

        1. Delia .

          I have no idea why the cannabis guy got pushed out. That was circa 2011, perhaps? Long after the Roma rats had to find a new coffee place. 😉
          Yes, good revenue from all us aging hippies with cataracts. ;

        2. Marina Kalugin

          omg Alphabet Moon….yesterday I was so struggling to remember that name…my memory is not what it used to be, especially with names..

          did you know that the lovely place called Teach your kids something or other on the E st “mall” actually is a really good shop for educational toys and the pop who owns it is very knowledgeable..

          highly recommend him and that family shop instead of big-box stores…..

          kinda hidden and perhaps hard to find, but the pricing and selection is great as is the service.

          they also do laminating for a really reasonable price.

          Forgive me for wanting to encourage shopping at the local downtown small shops and cafes….. but this is an easy way to increase revenues for this town…shop with your feet and dollars in Davis…

           

    2. Tia Will

      One can rarely ever get into town now on Richards…  I don’t even try.”

      One cannot get to the UCD over on the 113 side as too much traffic on 80″

      One can always get into town now on Richards. It takes longer by car. No wait at all if one is traveling on foot or on bike on the arboretum path.

      get a clue and get a grip, please..

      we are dying out here..”

      Excuse me if I do not equate an additional 10 minutes spent behind the wheel by choice as “dying”. But maybe this is part of what is “in jest”.

      “on the other side of the freeway, those NIMBYs do not deal with the extent of issues we NIMBYs on this side have and continue to deal with, due to continued poor decisions by the CC and city planning and building..”

      Anyone who lives on the North side of town but works in South Davis faces the same challenges daily. And I think that it is important that we continue to view these as ongoing challenges much the same as were faced by previous generations and will be faced by those who follow us as opposed to some sort of existential “crisis” as keeps being portrayed in some of these articles and in some posts.

      1. Marina Kalugin

        obviously, the forest somehow gets missed again…

        those who live on the North side do not have the “extra” traffic, the hassle nor the ” criminal” element, thefts and such  – as the North and West do not have their “fair” share, or rather “any share” of the “low income – affordable tenements”….where a lot of low income people are living in a small area….and where there does exist a much higher percentage of gang members, and those who commit various crimes, mostly petty, but still annoying…..back when the DE used to report the “police” blotter…certain streets would come up way more frequently…especially Valdora in Soda…and  certain areas of E. 8th also..you know, where those lovely large apartments are for the “income” challenged????

         

  4. Marina Kalugin

    PS>   Tried to edit, but not enough time…..we NIMBYs on the south side of the freeway have no GATE options either…never have…have always had to go outside the neighborhood schools…

    and over the freeway…..fortunately, my sons were strong and rode their bikes all over town…even taking their lives in their hands to cross Richards as it was faster….

    omg…good thing I didn’t know that until after they graduated…

    wow

     

  5. Marina Kalugin

    guess what, that hotel ain’t gonna happen either, unless it is zoned for such already…

    unless the new and way better undercrossing is built connecting Soda with campus and/or Soda with some other area that will allow easier access to downtown..

    and we are not talking about “expanding” Richards…. that is really not gonna happen..

    enjoy your Sunday…

     

    1. Matt Williams

      Marina, what are your objections to an extended stay Hyatt (for those who aren’t aware of this application it is on the 2 acre lot next to Davis Diamonds on Chiles)?

      I believe this Hyatt application is a very good opportunity to see if Davis can actually do a development application process well.  One of the first questions that comes to mind is whether the applicant has done community outreach to the neighbors of the parcel.

  6. Marina Kalugin

    PS>   David, please stop espousing the developers side…the problems were caused by massive development and letting developers off the hook..  like just a few months ago to the tune of $10mil by our lovely “wonderful” council majority …how fast people forget….

    fortunately, I am here to remind them…

     

    1. David Greenwald

      Show me where I have espoused the developer side – I said EVERYONE needs to give a little in order to solve this. Explain your solution to the $32 million plus deficit without new development?

      1. Marina Kalugin

        touchy touchy….. I have been sharing ad infinitum on this and other threads…..

        of course, when I suggest that developers be made to not skip out on agreements, like the Cannery did recently to the tune of $10 mil…others are not so happy…

        that is a third of the $32 mil….wow…

         

        1. David Greenwald

          Accuracy is important. I asked for an example and you didn’t provide it. Also Cannery did not skip out on an agreement and the $10 million you refer to, even if accurate, would be one-time money. The $32 million is ongoing money – as in we are short $32 million every year. So it would not be accurate to say that’s one-third of the $32 million.

        2. Matt Williams

          Marina, the $32 million is the amount each year, every year, for 20 years.  The $10 million from the Cannery CFD would only cover one-third of one year’s $32 million.  That would still leave 19 years of $32 million still unfunded.

          Apples and oranges.

        1. quielo

          “That would be to the school parcel tax, no? I don’t see how that helps the city coffers” The article suggests a parcel tax to fund both schools and city expenses. if you have allow exemptions you will have great difficulty meeting your goal.

          1. Don Shor

            They are two separate parcel taxes. But I can see how they interact in terms of voter fatigue.

        2. hpierce

          Pretty sure that a single parcel tax for both DJUSD and City would be illegal [and/or problematic]… the “footprints” of the City and DJUSD are different.  Big time.

          I always interpreted the numbers as theoretical combinations of what they might be… Ex:  El Macero, ‘old’ Willowbank, etc., are in DJUSD, but NOT subject to a City parcel tax.

        3. Matt Williams

          quielo, the information I received directly from the DJUSD Finance Department is that there aer 1,241 Opt-In Senior Exemptions for the Measure C Parcel Tax, and 1,552 Opt-In Senior Exemptions for the Measure E Parcel Tax.

        4. quielo

          Thanks Matt,

           

          I had heard 3,000 though maybe the speaker meant both together. With an opt-out rate that high, and likely to get higher with the new proposed exemptions, it will be important to get people to pay the current one before seeking a new parcel tax.

          1. David Greenwald

            That’s assuming that the city would allow an opt-out for seniors. It also assumes that the city will go the Parcel Tax route as opposed to other routes for revenue.

  7. Topcat

    There are those who believe we can still solve the problem through austerity and cuts.

    I don’t think that we can “solve” the problem through austerity and cuts, but I do suggest that they should be part of the solution.  Given the generous pay and benefits that City employees enjoy, isn’t it possible that there is room for some economizing?

    1. Barack Palin

      I agree, austerity and cuts have to be part of the solution.  I would like to see the city wean off of its defined pension plans and go to 401k plans for all employees.  Also future contracts should reflect our dire fiscal realities.  If everyone is going to contribute and give a little we’re going to also need more cuts from city employees.

      1. Delia .

        Reminder for readers suggesting gov’t  contract revisions: many gov’t ee’s stay at their jobs due to promised benefits for themselves, and their surviving children. Cops and firefighters, (and teachers) are 3 obvious examples. They also have a written, legal agreement that these benefits will be provided to their family survivors.

        1. Delia .

          Reminder for readers suggesting gov’t  contract revisions: many gov’t ee’s stay at their jobs due to promised benefits for themselves, and their surviving children. Cops and firefighters, (and teachets)are 3 obvious examples. They also have a written, legal agreement that these benefits will be provided to their family survivors.
          But I do believe most people in these 3 examples mostly do their jobs because they truly want to serve their community in a positive way.

        2. Barack Palin

          Many in the private sector have seen their benefits cut because their companies didn’t have the money to fund them.   Why should the public sector be any different, if the city doesn’t have the funds maybe they should face cuts too.  Cops and firefighters make good money, especially our local firefighters.  So cry me a river if their benies have to be  cut like many others have faced when fiscal reality hits.

        3. Barack Palin

          This is getting off track.

          How so?  It’s about our revenue crisis and ways to solve it.

          So you speak up that this is off track but say nothing about the Alphabet Moon, Bogey’s Books, Cafe Roma and medical MD posts above?  Sometimes I really wonder.

      2. hpierce

        Ok… will assume you also support weaning DJUSD, UCD, County, State, and Feds from defined pensions to 401 programs (you appear to show lack of ‘depth’ on pensions… there is more than one flavor of 401’s… and there are 457’s, etc.).

        Also, SS is nominally a ‘defined benefit’ program… you recommend SS goes to a 4XX defined contribution, where the benefit is dependent on investment results, as well?

        What retirement investments/’pension’ ‘plans are you under? Or, just your personal investments/savings?

    2. David Greenwald

      Sure. I was against the raise last year for those reasons. At the very least we should hold the line on payroll. But given we have reduce our city employees by 100, I just don’t think we’re going to get that deep into the funds through cuts.

      1. Topcat

        At the very least we should hold the line on payroll. But given we have reduce our city employees by 100, I just don’t think we’re going to get that deep into the funds through cuts.

        Yes, I agree that economizing is only going to be part of the solution, but it does have to be talked about and we do have to hold the councilmember’s feet to the fire to get them to hold the line on payroll and benefits.

  8. Marina Kalugin

    yes, many now are commuting to the Bay area and clogging up our roads and highways…they also pay cash for their million plus homes….as Davis is still so much cheaper than a 900 sq ft fixer anywhere down there…and the big developments like the Cannery are spurring that influx…

    the Cannery, like other large “developments” for example the  huge affordable housing  complexes throughout the 95618 zip codes, advertises all over to get the influx of new residents to fill up the unneeded large developments…  some are driving up prices of housing, while on the opposite end, the others are sucking up services…

    of course none of those are popular statements either, but by not flooding the “market” with too much too fast, which puts a stress on roads, services, schools, etc…  we would not be in this boat either..

    a solution would be to figure out how to get the Cannery (and others who are all laughing to the bank)… to agree to what they originally promised, and so on..

    of course, is this same council majority going to even try???   I doubt it…but that is one way to make things a bit more in the correct direction…

    maybe if one asks nicely? what do you think?

     

    1. David Greenwald

      You keep repeating a falsehood by stating “get the Cannery… To agree to what they originally promised.” I have a lot of issues with the Cannery development and the CFD, but your statement isn’t accurate and your money figure is flat out wrong.

  9. Misanthrop

    Marina: “our schools are inundated with the children brought in from elsewhere in CA…who are on government services and causing real issues with the “local” elementary schools…”

    Such an offensive attack on poor children, people who have little power to defend themselves. Now let’s see who has children in South Davis brought here from other places? I would hope that  people who have a voice would speak up in the defense of poor people to try to get the best available opportunities for the children who live in this community. Never mind the class and other implications of such prejudice.

  10. Misanthrop

    “The fact is that we are facing the real possibility of not being able to meet our roads and bike path needs.  Are we as a community willing to shut down our bike path network?”

    Not the biKe paths but I could see us letting the roads go. Have you gotten off I-80 at Olive Drive lately. Of course many old timer, opposed to everything people, wouldn’t be able to get downtown anymore in their cars, their blue placards useless against father time’s impact on our roads.

  11. Mark West

    “The fact is that we are facing the real possibility of not being able to meet our roads and bike path needs.”
    “We need to face the real possibility that we won’t be able to maintain our swimming pools”

    Get real David, we haven’t been meeting the road and path needs for at least 15 years, and Community and Civic pools have already been closed to the public because we cannot afford to maintain them (If not for the local swim team taking on the expense those pools would be empty eyesores). These are not future problems that may occur if we fail to act, they already exist because we have already failed.

    “Can we get creative and find ways to drive business and jobs to this community to not only generate more tax revenue, but to get them here and actually buys products that will improve our economy and generate more taxes themselves?”

    We studied this problem for a number of years and came up with a viable solution. When it came time to begin implementation, the Community rejected the solution. The comments about ‘a better project would have been approved’ is nothing more than ‘VG Magical Thinking’ and yet another example of the ‘demand for perfection’ that so permeates our community’s mindset. There is no Plan B.

    The community chose to take the retail options off the table a few decades ago with our rejection of major retail establishments through the store size and other zoning limitations that are still in effect today. The best part is that the advocates for this approach still crow about their success. “We saved the Downtown…” (while bankrupting the City). 

    “Can We Forge Community Consensus To Solve Our Revenue Crisis?”

    Look at the comments here over the past several weeks (years) and you will see a multitude of examples of those unwilling to let go of their preconceived notions of their own vision of an ‘ideal Davis.’ Until that changes, the obvious answer to your question, is no.

      1. Frankly

        The city is insolvent and growing more so.  If the city was required to comply with GAAP, it would have had to declare bankruptcy years ago.   It is only because of the public sector accounting shells games that the declaration can be denied.

    1. Adam Smith

      The best part is that the advocates for this approach still crow about their success. “We saved the Downtown…” (while bankrupting the City).

      Actually, they didn’t save the downtown.    Over the last 10 years, downtown has lost  much of its retail, no differently than if Davis had built a power center with Costco, Best Buy, Michaels,  Walmart etc.  All that type of shopping is happening in Woodland, West Sac and Dixon.    Davis  lost the sales tax on all those sales.     Downtown, as an entertainment district,  will always be protected because of the proximity of the campus and 35,000 students and additional university staff passing near by on a day to day basis.

  12. Marina Kalugin

    Actually, it is not….it is a simple and factual statement.

    I am actually one of the least biased and racist people around…….but I will also bring up issues even when it “sounds” not pc…

    And, I got the $10 mil number from postings by Matt Williams (on various threads on the DV)  and also the DE at the time.

    If one looks at that chronology of events one day the Cannery and CC finally knock out an “agreement”  and within days ( or at least within days of me catching up on piles of DE which I had no time to scan)…they are back saying the “cannot afford it”  and the CC says “ok”.

    Please correct me, if my recollection is incorrect.

     

    1. David Greenwald

      I don’t know where the $10 million figure comes from, but I’ll guess it comes from the fact that the council went and approved a CFD after the fact for the Cannery (something I opposed strongly). that gave the developers a funding mechanism for their commitments, but the city only got a small benefit from it. However, and this is most important, any benefit to the city would have been one-time, what we are talking about here is ongoing, annual deficits. You are comparing apples to squash at best even if the $10 million figure is accurate.

      1. Marina Kalugin

        yes, I was grasping to recall the CFD acronym….

        believe me, I understand one time monies versus ongoing very well…

        If not for continuing small bits of one-time monies to help keep our department afloat, our department would have been combined with another department, if the then Deans had their way.

        It took a lot of effort by many people and lots of ideas, and lots of cost-saving tactics, and yes, deferred maintenance and making do without.

        But, that amount is anything but small and would truly have helped in the short term.

        It would help right away, if we had it and allow more time to formulate an ongoing and  more sustainable plan

        1. David Greenwald

          “believe me, I understand one time monies versus ongoing very well…”

          Then why are you saying that $10 million from Cannery (which I dispute) is one-third of the annual $32 million shortfall?

  13. Marina Kalugin

    off track is very subjective…and some of us are called out more than others…but when one is looking at how to “right this sinking ship”  one should be wiling to hear all sides and to allow discourse….and “odd solutions” as well as the usual ones

    I really don’t hope that anyone thinks that those in the public sector in this town deserve getting their pension slashed or benefits cut.  Many are only here doing work at a lower salary then they could get in industry because of their loyalty to this town.

    I do, however, think that there are ways to handle some of those issues with some “out of the box” thinking and ideas.

    Some of us bring up small shops which left, because we could have helped them better survive.

    Many started going to Target for toys instead of Alphabet Moon, for example..that is what I was told by the owner/staff….that is an example of how we could do small steps to boost up the remaining beloved businesses and what not to do to kill them off.

    One really doesn’t need to do huge, draconian actions….often small steps by many people would add up to a significant amount and it would be less painful for all.

     

    1. David Greenwald

      “One really doesn’t need to do huge, draconian actions….often small steps by many people would add up to a significant amount and it would be less painful for all.”

      Right. You still haven’t explained where the $32 million of ongoing money is coming from.

      1. Marina Kalugin

        and, please show me where it is in my job description to explain that to you or anyone here.

        yet, you keep asking me where I got the $10 mil number and seem to infer that is not even going to be helpful to get it back from the developers who stole it..

        that was the CC job…and they failed miserably.

        I also told you and others here why we do not trust the developers and why and still that is considered off topic.

        and I also explained their tactics   which are now being played out with the Hyatt Hotel proposal in an area where it was not part of the general plan and so on..

        and, hardly a soul here still seems to understand what I shared and hardly has  a clue that the developers are at it again…

        right now…on this very same issue.

        and the only reason the populace is, once again, aghast, is that the general plan is thrown out by the whims of the council….and that the developers will continue to do this same thing, unless someone on the council says …wait a minute…go away and bring a proposal which conforms to the plan..

        it has been decades since this council had anyone of  that caliber on it..

        and, that is why so much time, money and etc is wasted on idiotic projects like Nishi and Cannery 2 and other such large, unneeded and useless “developments”…

        which have caused more issues (ie:Cannery)  then they have ever solved….even when IN the general plan and citizen input has been summarily dismissed…

         

         

        1. David Greenwald

          If you make a claim, you should be able to back it up. I asked you where you got the $10 million number, you couldn’t answer it. You failed to understand the difference between one-time money and on-going money. Now you are libeling the developers with the frivolous claim that they “stole it.”

          I’ll point out another example, you wrote, “The hotel should be developed on all the vacant parcels by 113 & Covell.” The problem is, none ofthose parcels are in the city. They are in the county. That means it would not only require a Measure R vote, but the county would get a tax share from them. Then early, you urged the developers to build a hotel on campus (never mind that there is one and that the developers do not own parcels on campus). However, the developers could build it on campus and not have to deal with the pushback from the community, but that would defeat the purpose of building the hotel as the university would get the hundreds of thousands in annual TOT revenue, not the city. How does that help us?

          What’s interesting to me is that you are giving us insight into your thinking process overall here on things that we know and can verify which leads to me to greater skepticism about other claims you make with regards to the chancellor and the university.

    2. Tia Will

      I do, however, think that there are ways to handle some of those issues with some “out of the box” thinking and ideas.”

      With this, I agree. I have posted some ideas that I think might be useful on several occasions. I would love to hear your specific “out of the box” suggestions.

    1. Tia Will

      Thanks for posting this reference Frankly. This process is quite similar to the process for improvement that has been used for a number of years by Kaiser hospitals and the Permanente Medical Group.

      One cautionary note about this process. I believe that it is critical that the upper level administrators listen to the concerns about metrics expressed by the lower level employees. If the rationale behind such metrics are not made transparent and are not of clear value, the metrics become just another “bean” being counted by the bean counters and can become seen as a needless distraction to getting one’s job done and actually providing excellent service instead of just “meeting the metric”.

  14. Roberta Millstein

    Instead of “Can We Forge Community Consensus to Solve Our Revenue Crisis?” maybe ask, “What step can we take that would have widespread support and build trust in the process?”   Maybe people need to see that there is a serious concern about the revenue crisis itself (rather than just money in developer pockets) before moving on to more sweeping measures.  “Not enough,” some will say, but perhaps it is better to take baby steps toward the goal rather than to try to take a big step the community isn’t ready for and fall flat on our faces.

    1. Don Shor

      Maybe people need to see that there is a serious concern about the revenue crisis itself (rather than just money in developer pockets) before moving on to more sweeping measures.

      I agree. I don’t think most people perceive a serious short-term or long-term budget problem in Davis. I think most people don’t think the roads are in bad shape. I suspect some think that it’s being hyped to promote development. It would be useful to find out what the level of awareness is and what the actual attitudes are in the community.

    2. Matt Williams

      I also agree Roberta.

      The dialogue I had yesterday with Barack Palin and David Greenwald was aimed at having a frank discussion about our fiscal challenges.  For me, the term “revenue crisis” is problematic on two levels.  The first is that any budget, whether for a governmental agency, or for a business, or at an individual/personal level has more to it than just revenue. The second is that if we truly do have a “crisis” it is actually a “costs crisis” and/or a “bottom-line crisis”

  15. hpierce

    You raise a good point… there are the “chicken littles” [sky is falling] and the “ostriches” [deniers]…  IMO the truth lies pretty much in the middle of those.

    I believe that we need to think, and as we do so, take steps to minimize risks, until we find a solution.  It will take time, but inaction is not a viable option.  Neither is over-reaction.

    No way I think we will find “the final solution” in a year or so…  but the issues must be articulated and understood, and measures taken.

    I think the “key” lies in a realm where Davisites cannot directly control… State-wide tax policies… Prop 13 needs to be revised [too many loopholes for commercial (inc. apartment) uses][and, a bit too restrictive on SF, as well].  Perhaps more income tax and less property tax reliance (off the hip).  ERAF needs to be revisited.  The MV tax could well be increased.  Many moving parts…

    I do not claim to know the answers, but I see the problem.

    1. Mark West

      “I think the “key” lies in a realm where Davisites cannot directly control… State-wide tax policies”

      I am going to cherry pick this one comment to make the point that far too often we act as if someone else is going to come along and solve our problems for us. For example, we cannot afford to pay to repair our roads, so we wait for the State to create a new program to help.  We cannot afford to pay for the benefits we have provided City employees, so we wait for the State to bail us out. We have a severe apartment shortage in town, so we wait for the University to supply more student housing.  These problems are of our own making, and we need to address them ourselves, not wait for someone else to do it for us. These are our community’s obligations, and we need to act to address them. If some outside entity also chooses to act in a way that helps us, that should just be ‘gravy.’

      “It will take time, but inaction is not a viable option.”

      Yet, so far, inaction is the only thing that we have mastered.

      1. Tia Will

        I am going to cherry pick this one comment to make the point that far too often we act as if someone else is going to come along and solve our problems for us”

        This is a statement with which I agree. And I would go further. It is not only the state or the university that we want to pay our bills which only we have incurred. We want new businesses and new inhabitants of our town to pay these bills for us. This is the “grow our way out of trouble” philosophy which I find no more responsible than the “let’s make the university, or region, or state pay our bills for us.

        Money is certainly needed to address the niceties of living in Davis that we all appreciate. But it is our responsibility to pay for what we want based on our collective ( not individual) values and desires. I think it is bogus to claim that anyone whose values differ from one’s own is “selfish” or any of the other derogatory terms those who see no value in collaboration love to throw around. Until we are willing to heed David’s statement that we will all need to give something, we are unlikely to move forward on our current difficulties.

  16. Tia Will

    Your advocacy here is an attempt to justify your selfish approach to life, putting your perceived ‘quality of life’ ahead of the needs of the rest of the community.”

    I think that it is you who are tipping your hand with regard to bias here. I made no statement of advocacy whatsoever in any of my posts on this issue. I have favored some projects in town, and not others based on what I saw as the relative merits of each project. I have made no pronouncement either for or against the Hyatt project based on incomplete information, and yet you have decided, based on nothing at all, that I am advocating or opposing something. Since you have no basis for this comment, the charge of a “selfish approach to life” is nothing more than an egregious personal attack based on your preconceived notion of what I must believe.

    What I believe is that developers and existing property owners are likely both acting in what they perceive as their own best interest. Again I ask, what makes one side more “selfish” than the other since both have their own values at stake ?

    1. Mark West

      By ‘advocacy’ I was referring to the position that you have taken in total on many subjects over the past few years of posting here and was not referring to your position on any single development project. Your advocacy is to protect your selfish interests regardless of the costs to the community.  My assessment is based on your specific words and actions, not on any “preconceived notion of what [you] must believe.”

      1. Tia Will

        Your advocacy is to protect your selfish interests regardless of the costs to the community.”

        And the flip side of that coin is that the advocacy of some developers is to enhance their bottom line by being able to improve their profits regardless of the adverse consequences that will be felt by the “community” as represented by the immediate neighbors. I do not see either the community members, nor the developers as altruists in this scenario, but you seem to see only one side as “righteous” in their pursuit of increased profit.

        1. Mark West

          “felt by the “community” as represented by the immediate neighbors.”

          The immediate neighbors do not represent the community, just a small part of it.

          “but you seem to see only one side as “righteous” in their pursuit of increased profit.”

          Please demonstrate where I have ever made such a claim. (What was it you said?  Oh yes, “based on your preconceived notion of what I must believe.”)

  17. Biddlin

    ” I think that it is important that we continue to view these as ongoing challenges much the same as were faced by previous generations and will be faced by those who follow us ”

    But when will you meet them?

    “Have I missed this major declaration ?”

    No, just ignored the reality.

    “but perhaps it is better to take baby steps toward the goal”

    IMO. too late. Baby steps won’t outrun the flow.

    http://i.imgur.com/n5V43Rr.gif

    “measures taken.”

    (so far J and R)

    “Yet, so far, inaction is the only thing that we have mastered.”

    Certainly how it looks from here.

     

     

    1. Tia Will

      But when will you meet them?”

      I have stated repeatedly how I would meet them. I would suggest an increase in taxes to be placed on the next ballot.  I advocated for Nishi which I saw as a prudent development meeting several community needs. I probably would have favored DIC but it disappeared before I had enough information. I favor making sure that we are fully utilizing the funds that we currently have available in the most cost effective manner possible.

      “Have I missed this major declaration ?”

      No, just ignored the reality.”

      Unless the city has declared bankruptcy while I was not looking, this is not a reality that I am ignoring, but rather a scare tactic from those who are driving a “grow our way out of trouble” agenda.

      Pretty picture, but pure hyperbole !  Very unlikely to change anyone’s opinion.

       

  18. Biddlin

    ” a scare tactic”

    There’s your problem, right there. The wolf really is at the door and you’re ignoring the knocking. The only thing that has changed in the last 15 years in Davis is the magnitude of the issues.

  19. Tia Will

    The only thing that has changed in the last 15 years in Davis is the magnitude of the issues.”

    So here is a major irony of this statement. If the only thing that has changed in the past 15 years is the magnitude, and the wolf is at the door, then this must be the slowest wolf  ( or lava flow ) on record. When, again did you say that those bankruptcy papers had been filed ?

    If you want to say that we have serious economic issues, fine, I agree. If you want to merely point fingers at people who are putting forth their ideas of how to proceed and call them names, then I am hard pressed to see you as any more apart of the solution than you are accusing them of being.

     

     

     

     

     

    i

     

    1. Biddlin

      Ideas are worthless if you don’t act, in time. I think you’ve already gone past the tipping point. Frankly, who has a much closer and more fiscally oriented view than I, is beginning to agree. Even before the defeat of the most recent effort, neighboring towns were sending loud messages that they are happy to take up your slack. Meanwhile you still can’t pay for your parks, streets and other amenities that make up “your Davis.”

    2. Mark West

      If the City had to function using the same accounting rules required of businesses or individuals, Davis would have been declared insolvent long ago.  The only reason that the City is not formally ‘bankrupt’ is because politicians have manipulated the rules to make it easier to over-promise and overspend without facing the consequences. I would think that anyone with half a brain would look at the estimated $32 million annual deficit on a $60 million General Fund budget and realize that the fiscal situation is beyond critical. Make all the justifications and excuses you want Tia, the situation will not change. The City is broke and you have no answers beyond making everyone else pay more in taxes in order to continue to fund your ‘quality of life.’

      1. Matt Williams

        I’m going to rephrase Mark’s comment . . . Businesses/Corporations have to follow the rules of Accrual Accounting and Governments in California have to follow the rules of Cash Accounting.  In Accrual Accounting future obligations have to be transparently recognized/reported in the current period.  In Cash Accounting future obligations do not have to be transparently recognized/reported in the current period.

        Bottom-line, governments can practice “out of sight, out of mind” accounting . . . hiding the true state of the jurisdiction’s fiscal health from the citizens.

        Yesterday The Economist published an article entitled No love, actuary — A report on American pension funds is controversially shelved that begins as follows:

        WHEN it comes to funding the pensions of their workers, American states and local governments have not been doing a good job. Back in 2000, the average pension plan was fully funded, according to the Centre for Retirement Research (CRR); at the end of 2015, the official funding ratio was just 72%.

        So a report from a pension-finance task force into the way economic principles apply to public pension funds ought to make compulsory reading. But the paper, commissioned by the American Academy of Actuaries (AAA) and the Society of Actuaries (SoA), is not going to see the light of day. That is very disappointing, since the report (a draft of which has been seen by The Economist) highlights how the approach to valuing American public pensions is highly questionable.

        The big costs for pension plans lie in the future, as members retire and benefits are paid. Those costs must be discounted at some rate to the present day so those who run schemes know how much money to put aside. The higher the discount rate, the less money has to be put aside now; American public plans tend to use a discount rate of around 7.5%, based on the investment return they expect to achieve.

        I have sent The Economist an e-mail seeking permission to reprint the article in its entirety in the Vanguard.

        1. Biddlin

          “,,, if you lived in some small idyllic rural village that sustained its economy from … the largest and most successful and fastest growing,,,campus in the middle of town…  in the middle of a region with a strong economic-growth position and trend.

          In another galaxy far, far away…

          https://media1.britannica.com/eb-media/03/117103-004-35E6732D.jpg

          https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/2f/John_Speed's_map_of_Oxford,_1605..jpg

          (north is at bottom of this map.

          http://www.harwellparish.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/pandr-244×300.jpg

          http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/resources/images/5016226/?type=responsive-gallery

          http://media.gettyimages.com/videos/aerial-shots-city-of-oxford-oxford-university-colleges-radcliffe-on-video-id475043664?s=640×640

          Plan or not, over the course, sh*t happens and people have to olive and work somewhere.

          http://www.any-town.co.uk/H/Headington/Texts/Headington_AerialView.jpg

          https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&site=imghp&tbm=isch&source=hp&biw=1920&bih=971&q=Iommi%27s+new+guitar&oq=Iommi%27s+new+guitar&

          http://i555.photobucket.com/albums/jj470/mab01uk/TanyaMinis-1_zpscd214110.jpggs_l=img.3…2512.14148.0.14715.20.4.1.15.16.0.92.330.4.4.0….0…1ac.1.64.img..0.5.332…0.iN9Y4XiGAIg#hl=en&tbm=isch&q=oxford+uk+greenbelt+map&imgrc=VhbgirI7MFw1-M%3A

          https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/11/Oxford_High_Street_shoppers.jpg

          Start teaching some ag courses at the local council hall and after awhile, whether you plan or not, SH*T HAPPENS! I’m guessing that the population of Oxford was about 2500 in the 10th century. Now, with 159,994 people, not including the non-residents among the 23,000 students, they are feeling the pinch for housing and good jobs.

          The Mini Clubman plant opened up recently, but that has just increased demand for housing and other amenities.

      2. Tia Will

        I have made absolutely no justifications nor excuses. In my own home, I anticipate that I will pay for everything that I want and if I cannot pay for it, I simply do not get it. In our city, I believe that we should be paying for our own bills. I am not expecting any of you to pay my share and as a matter of fact, I have repeatedly stated that I would be willing to kick in extra for those who truly cannot afford to pay. What I am not willing to do is to pass off to newcomers to town, nor to our children, what we did not have the responsibility to pay for ourselves. This is a major difference between us. I truly believe that we as citizens of this town should pay our own bills where as you seem determined to import others to pay for them. The most blatant example of this is the TOT wherein we expect visits to our town to pay for what we want. Now I am not opposed to the development of the hotels, but I think it is the height of irresponsibility to pretend that this is not passing our bills off to others.

        1. Mark West

          “you seem determined to import others to pay for them.”

          Again…please demonstrate where I have ever made such a claim. (What was it you said?  Oh yes, “based on your preconceived notion of what I must believe.”)

          You are correct Tia, we have very different visions.  Your’s is self-centered and focused on your personal ‘wants.’ Mine is community-centered and focused on making the City a better place for all. Increasing economic vitality adds wealth to the community. Taxation on individuals reduces it. You want to raise everyone’s taxes to pay for the things you want, while I favor expanding business activity, growing jobs and building wealth in the community as the pathway to paying our bills. I want to see us invest in the future, while you remain stuck in your fantasy land vision of what you believe Davis ought to be.

          By the way, Tia, though I think it a somewhat unusual choice for your retirement, when you are ready to start your new brothel I will be happy to give you my neighbor’s contact information. At 950 SF (not counting the garage) you may have to really ‘pack ’em in’ to make a profit, but I’m sure your business will be much quieter (with less traffic) than the mini-dorm currently occupying the site. The City will likely get more tax revenues as well. Do you think we can charge TOT by the hour?

           

           

        2. Adam Smith

          but I think it is the height of irresponsibility to pretend that this is not passing our bills off to others.

          I’m not sure I follow your logic.   Are you saying that we Davisites, should be able to put walls up around our city (from a revenue generation standpoint) and make sure that we balance the budget based revenues generated from our 65,000 people?  While we don’t have much tourism, we do have some business visitors and lots of visitors related to the university (parents, conferences,  alumni, etc) who visit, eat here and sometimes stay in Davis (although they would stay much more often if there more and better hotels in Davis).   They currently generate revenue for the city.    What about federal or state grants and matching funds from various entities?  Those type of funds  aren’t generated by our citizens.

          I, like Mark, have a different view than you.  I think it is the height of irresponsibility to set up a revenue and expense system that has $30 million more in annual expenses than it does revenue.

           

    3. hpierce

      Tia… have you ever witnessed a lava flow, up close and personal?  I have… “big island” [Hawaii]

      The one I witnessed moved ~ 2 inches per minute… nothing could have stopped it… two inches per minute equals 10 feet per hour, equals 240 feet per day, equals 16.6 miles per year.

      It would look like it slowed, cooled a bit, then the black rock incandesced to orange/red again, then moved on…

      Whole subdivided tracts “disappeared” (fortunately, no homes had been built yet)… under a foot or so of lava rock.

  20. Marina Kalugin

    as I tell my hubby and other famiy, who ask why I check in here and at FB periodically when I am working nonstop on many issues round the clock…my response, is where else can I get such  laugh from much of the absurdity

    and, for anyone who thinks was are better off without the $10 mil one time funds, and that was okay to let those developers break an agreement, well keep on laughing….

    I would rather have those funds and fix a few potholes around town…

    really, that kind of CC council attitude is what keeps the developers sure they can get away with more…and they will and do…

    1. hpierce

      Yes… and if you’ll be getting a UC pension, probably ~ 5-7% of that will be funded by real estate investments based on those damn greedy developers… assume that you’ll be donating that back to the State?  Right?

      1. Marina Kalugin

        even when I was only a “lowly” staff member, I donated more than most to the SLB construction…you can see my name on the plaque…at the SLB…..as a proud alum, albeit a single mother who was raising 2 bright sons,  I paid off that donation over several years…..

        The costs of educating extended way beyond the date they turned 18….and I paid all of those expenses myself….as when my salary “overtook” my ex’es, we agreed he didn’t need to pay any more “child” support..   Both sons are way underemployed and I still subsidize them.

        Fortunately, I have been a smart “investor” over the years, and now do not need to worry..

        For many decades I worked overtime, in “represented” positions where I was supposed to get overtime pay….I would get “in trouble” for not reporting the time and/or working overtime without permission…

        However, there was never enough time in the day to get done all that was needed.

        I more than paid my dues, if anyone was wondering.

        Now, my circumstances are even different.   I am not planning my estate plan which will fund some of my “pet” UCD projects…..stay tuned…

        Yes, much of any UCD retirement income and more will be donated…not that it is any of the business of the snide idiots on this board still who think it is appropriate to continue to attack me and also the Chancellor.

         

  21. Marina Kalugin

    for one thing, the developers are used to purchasing what they think are bargains and then push for zoning changes and variances…and that is why they get the land at a bargain and typically the CC is ready to do whatever they want

    I think a much better spot for some hotels is over by the covell entrance off of 113….near the hospital and such…lots of land there also…and not so many issues with heading to town on overcrowded roadways…

    there are already fast food places and such there…would be a match made in heaven…

    however, that is not where these developers picked up a “bargain”  they should develop according to the plan, here near Rosecreek, and then all will be happy, correct?   and then we will have more business park which the yes on A folks have been yelling about also, right?

    1. Marina Kalugin

      so , I see that no- one here on the “pro-developer” side could give a reason why the hell not hold the developers to create a project for that site, which actually fits the general plan..

      how come?   is that really such a strange idea?

      if this one time, that would happen, we would stave off so many “developer” created waste of time “projects” for quite a few years..

      is that really such a strange thought?

      my children never caused tantrums in grocery stores…they learned early on, that I would not be buying something on impulse….and certainly not anything they may cause a tantrum over..

      why cannot the developers learn that all they have to do is create a project which conforms to the zoning and there will not be any citizen “outcry”….jeesh….

      1. South of Davis

        Marina wrote:

        > why cannot the developers learn that all they have to

        > do is create a project which conforms to the zoning

        > and there will not be any citizen “outcry”…

        Did Jerome Davis zone the area where you live for single family homes in the 1850’s (or was the zoning changed by the developers)?

        1. Ron

          SouthofDavis:  “Did Jerome Davis zone the area where you live for single family homes in the 1850’s (or was the zoning changed by the developers)?”

          Not necessarily expressing an opinion regarding this particular proposal.  However, I doubt that Jerome Davis had many immediate neighbors.

          Regarding “NIMBYism” (in general), I try to avoid advocating for changes in zoning that would (significantly) negatively impact others (even outside of my own “backyard”).

          Overall, I find it interesting that some have turned the argument around, and are now attempting to suggest that neighbors (and not developers) are “selfish”.

           

        2. South of Davis

          Ron wrote:

          > I try to avoid advocating for changes in zoning that

          > would (significantly) negatively impact others

          Can you (or anyone else) name any specific single project in Davis over the past 50 years that has had a  “significant” negative impact on you or someone else?

          1. David Greenwald

            That’s a much more difficult question than you think.

            1. there are all sorts of traffic impacts, how do we know which projects contributed to which impacts?
            2. There are all sorts of noise impacts
            3. There are all sorts of visual blight?
            4. Also how would we measure impacts of pollution and the like? But an easy answer is the Frontier Fertilizer project.

        3. Marina Kalugin

          come over to my house and I will show you…South of Davis…

          not kidding…even it will be obvious to you….

          PS>   I keep wondering if the Ron, is my neighbor Ron ….

          in that case, you could even get a two for one tour

        4. Ron

          SouthofDavis:  “Can you (or anyone else) name any specific single project in Davis over the past 50 years that has had a  “significant” negative impact on you or someone else?”

          (So far), there hasn’t been any large infill projects built near my house.  Therefore, perhaps this is a question best answered by others.  However, all infill (and peripheral) development affects traffic, costs/impacts for infrastructure and city services, water usage, etc.

          This ultimately affects all residents, but not as much as those living adjacent to proposed developments.

  22. Marina Kalugin

    Richards is extremely dangerous for bicyclists…

    Due to health conditions, I can no longer ride a bike and due to my odd and extremely long hours, I cannot rely on unitrans any more either…  They do not offer enough service, especially during off hours…

    Further, my office is near the Hutchison parking structure…too far also for me to lug all the things I now “need” to have with me – from the house to the bus stop, and so on ….from the bus stop to my office and  when I move about between the various places I need to be..

    .

  23. Marina Kalugin

    and, without even seeing a peek at current income and expenses, out of the box thinking is outside my scope at the time

    however traditionally medical insurance is one of the largest benefit components.

    For some UCD employees, family medical coverage alone (and that is not including dental or vision) is around $2K per month   – and for the lowest paid positions, that monthly burden it now borne by UCD deparements.   it used to be socialized amongst ” the campus” yet now, the overstressed academic departments pay those ever escalating costs.

    Therefore, I would look at that first….and see how expensive the options are..and see if there are any “better”options which are not even offered….for example, the best and most cost-effective plan offered at UCD is Western Health Advantage….does the city even offer that option, and if not, why not?

    That would be the first thing I would analyze.

    I would certainly not attack any pension benefits…except, is medical offered for retirees?  UCD still offers that benefit, however it is not nearly as “good” as it was….because now the “retiree” has to bear a larger “contribution” to the cost, than an active employee..

    And, that would be something to check in to at the city also.

    When UC made that announcement in 2010, the reality of that change in policy was not so obvious – but it hit home when one of my long-time staff retired earlier than we had originally planned on, due to serious family care needs…and her monthly out of pocket went from $79/month for coverage for her and her spouse, to way over $400 per month….and that was now some 3-4 years ago, and the hit is way worse these days…

    The problem is when one or both spouses are under 65….and until both are 65 or older the UC no longer pays all of the high cost…

     

  24. Tia Will

    MW

     Your’s is self-centered and focused on your personal ‘wants.’ Mine is community-centered and focused on making the City a better place for all.”

    You asked for an example of where you had claimed to be “more righteous”. Well here it is. And I would agree if money were the most important thing in life, and my highest value, then I am sure that I also would see the “creation of wealth” as the highest good. However, I do not. Wealth accumulation has not been and is not now high on my list of priorities. I feel that much of the excess and waste and harm to the environment has been built directly on this idea that more wealth is always the goal. More products, more sales….always more.

    Yes, we do have a radically different view of the world. I believe that consistently favoring a less consumeristic, less disposable, less materialistic approach to life is community centered and is focused on making the City a better place for all.

    However, we also have another major difference. I believe that even those who have dramatically different perspectives can be civil and work together collaboratively. I do not believe that name calling including telling others how selfish they are is productive. You seem to consistently prefer the latter having multiple times employed it in both public and private communications. Telling someone that they “have no morals” ( and I quote) is hardly persuasive nor conducive to collaborative action.

     

    1. Frankly

      Tia – as I have commented before, I love the fact that you own your very liberal views.  It is refreshing to hear from you what others really believe but refuse to admit.

      But the problem here is that the others that believe but that refuse to admit… refuse to admit because… they generally know that their ideas are fanciful and lack any historical or present proof of a viable working society.  The historical and present proof is exactly the opposite… that Tia’s favored social design leads to much more human misery and suffering.

      I get it.  You are wired such that you are made uncomfortable by, and recoil from, fast-paced dynamism, change and a focus on human well-being being connected to economic growth and outcomes.  You are wired to be more attracted to stasis and scarcity… basically as tools to slow down the change that make you more anxious.

      You are not so unusual in Davis.  There is a high concentration of people like you.

      But you are unusual from a perspective of what is normal in the American system.

      You are really advocating for a transformation from what we are and have been, to what Tia would prefer we be.

      And that is where we get to the “selfish” label.  Because your are attempting to force-feed everyone else your worldview.  You are attempting to make Davis as a weird island of stasis and scarcity when their is tremendous need and pressure for change and economic growth.  Where adopting and accommodating those needs and pressures is the normal thing to do.  Where not doing so results in harm to many.

      It would be different if you lived in some small idyllic rural village that sustained its economy from tourism… or one that did not have the largest and most successful and fastest growing UC campus in the middle of town… or one that was not in the middle of a region with a strong economic-growth position and trend.

      Again, this isn’t Mark or Frankly pushing their worldview on you.  This is an organic economic and social need for growth that your are blocking and refusing to accept and using your worldview as a justification for keeping Davis some stasis, walled-off, exclusive, and economically-depressed island of weirdness.  It is a selfish pursuit.

      For example, I live right next to where the north Davis innovation park would be.  I would be impacted by traffic and the loss of the fields a block away from my house.  However, I would accept those impacts because of the benefits to the community.  I know Mark agrees… accepting impacts from peripheral development because there is a real need for it.

      He and I are both demonstrating charitable acceptance of personal impacts for the greater good for the city.

      You are not.

      1. Marina Kalugin

        that is nice…perhaps you and the neighbors should come forward and encourage that innovation park…  it is really not that unusual, as sometimes neighbors do that also….  if you and your folks are all for it, then go for it..

        I am not sure that the mitigation of the traffic and other concerns have been addressed enough though yet, so it may not be enough that the neighbors want it…

        and, do enough of the neighbors want it?  that is also to be seen…

        1. Frankly

          The problem is that the members of University Village (that place where many of the old retired wealthy UCD employees live out the last of their golden years) are rabid in opposition to anything developed within the range of their meager eyesight.

          And there are certainly others there that have grown entitled to the Davis way of resisting any impacts.

          I am not really very pleased with my neighbors either.

          But there are more of them that would probably support an innovation park next door if they were sufficiently knowledgeable of the need.

        2. Mark West

          “that is nice…perhaps you and the neighbors should come forward and encourage that innovation park”

          How, exactly, do you propose we do this?  I don’t own the land, nor do I have the financil resources to develop the project myself. The City already ‘encouraged’ a potential project, only to have a very vocal opposition scare off the developer. Honestly, the developer acted in a responsible manner and found another community that appreciated the financial risk involved in creating such a project. Our ‘no-first’ mindset has created an environment that developers look at and then choose to go elsewhere, no matter how ‘encouraging’ some of us may be.

    2. Mark West

      Tia –

      You want to change society, I get that, but it is not a solution to the City’s fiscal problems, no matter how much you want it to be. Stop the nonsense hypotheticals and address the problem at hand.

      We need to increase revenues and decrease costs. We can accomplish the revenue side in a way that takes money out of residents pockets by raising taxes (making Davis a more expensive place to live) or by expanding our economy and eventually putting money into residents pockets (good jobs, more business activity). Which approach shows more concern for the well-being of our neighbors?

      You apparently don’t believe that residents need more money in their pockets, likely because you already own your own house in town (two actually) and have sufficient disposable income to live your life the way you want (not materialistic, just the trappings). Not everyone has that luxury.

      1. Frankly

        I know someone that lives in a Belvedere CA manshion and dresses in what I would call frumpy chic… clothing that costs much more than average, but that helps her look like a low-materialistic save the trees and give more to poor people advocate.  There is a big market for that type of clothing in wealthy liberal San Francisco.

        Davis is also a very exclusive city to live in.  Most people in the region cannot afford Davis.

        So Tia is very materialistic by that measure.

        That is the problem with those that claim we should all live a less materialistic life.  They are usually wealthy people.  I don’t know any low income people taking up that chant.

        1. South of Davis

          Frankly wrote:

          > That is the problem with those that claim we should

          > all live a less materialistic life.  They are usually

          > wealthy people.

          It is funny that the people that want higher taxes are usually the ones that already own over a million dollars worth of real estate and a dependable car (not many people struggling to pay the ever increasing rents in town while they save up for an old Honda to drive when it rains are saying we need to increase sales taxes and parcel taxes)…

        2. quielo

          “That is the problem with those that claim we should all live a less materialistic life.” Only affluent people would understand that it is not the answer to all ills. People who are poor sustain themselves with the idea that if they could make more money they would feel better.

  25. Biddlin

    “,,, if you lived in some small idyllic rural village that sustained its economy from … the largest and most successful and fastest growing,,,campus in the middle of town…  in the middle of a region with a strong economic-growth position and trend.

    In another galaxy far, far away…

    https://media1.britannica.com/eb-media/03/117103-004-35E6732D.jpg

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/2f/John_Speed's_map_of_Oxford,_1605..jpg

    (north is at bottom of this map.

    http://www.harwellparish.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/pandr-244×300.jpg

    http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/resources/images/5016226/?type=responsive-gallery

    http://media.gettyimages.com/videos/aerial-shots-city-of-oxford-oxford-university-colleges-radcliffe-on-video-id475043664?s=640×640

    Plan or not, over the course, sh*t happens and people have to olive and work somewhere.

    http://www.any-town.co.uk/H/Headington/Texts/Headington_AerialView.jpg

    https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&site=imghp&tbm=isch&source=hp&biw=1920&bih=971&q=Iommi%27s+new+guitar&oq=Iommi%27s+new+guitar&

    http://i555.photobucket.com/albums/jj470/mab01uk/TanyaMinis-1_zpscd214110.jpggs_l=img.3…2512.14148.0.14715.20.4.1.15.16.0.92.330.4.4.0….0…1ac.1.64.img..0.5.332…0.iN9Y4XiGAIg#hl=en&tbm=isch&q=oxford+uk+greenbelt+map&imgrc=VhbgirI7MFw1-M%3A

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/11/Oxford_High_Street_shoppers.jpg

    Start teaching some ag courses at the local council hall and after awhile, whether you plan or not, SH*T HAPPENS! I’m guessing that the population of Oxford was about 2500 in the 10th century. Now, with 159,994 people, not including the non-residents among the 23,000 students, they are feeling the pinch for housing and good jobs.

    The Mini Clubman plant opened up recently, but that has just increased demand for housing and other amenities.

      1. Biddlin

        Sorry the images came out wrong, hazards of posting in motion. Not too many valets, but it is not uncommon for several to rent a flat or attached house with a charwoman and or cook.

        My flutist’s missus makes a nice income renting out her families old home and includes maid service in the cost.  The housing situation is very much like Davis with very few houses available for rent and hundreds of foreign workers on 12 month contracts, many with families in tow and of course all of the students. Though the buildings are taller(and a bit older) the situation is very similar in many respects. The owner of my favorite arcane bookstore, a 92 y.o. native and Royal Marine veteran, tells me that the “zoning” battles here started in 1066 and have  continued, unabated.

        http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/resources/images/5016226/?type=responsive-gallery

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