Measure S: Fear and Fake News

Truth. Does it really matter anymore?

Measure S would never pass if it ran on it’s own merits.

It’s one thing to debate the future of development in Los Angeles.

That’s fair.

It’s another to be pushing an agenda that only increases the harm to those Measure S claims to protect.

If you’re a person living in a low rent apartment, rent controlled unit or homeless, your life is about to get a lot worse if this passes.

Measure S also has no language to prevent evictions or teardowns not only for those most vulnerable, but for all of us.



The Sheriff’s Department sent a cease and desist letter to Yes on S for mailing this deceptive flyer out.


For those fortunate enough to be homeowners, your worries won’t be solved either because Measure S doesn’t stop mansionization, enforce architectural standards or keep luxury units from being built.

If you’ve read this far into the article, there should be one thing painfully obvious: both sides can’t be telling the truth.

Look closely at the details and you’ll know this isn’t about arguing nuance.

One side is severely manipulating the facts and should be ashamed to the depths that they’ve reached.

If you’ve seen those fake eviction notices or false endorsements from our Mayor, then you know there is no limit how far one side will go.

I reached my tipping point when I received this flyer:





Exploiting our veterans who will actually be victims of Measure S angers me to no end.

This flyer encapsulates all that is wrong with this initiative and why we’ll be worse off with it.

No matter which way you cut it, Measure S will only make housing much less affordable than it is now and will exacerbate homelessness even further.

Anyone who tells you otherwise can only be doing the truth a disservice or have been clouded by so much misinformation, that it’s hard to tell fact from fiction.

The first step to clear the air should be consulting your Voter Information Pamphlet (scroll to page 68) to fully understand what this initiative does.

You’ll find no mention of the many things the Yes on S people embrace as part of their platform.

Stopping evictions, mansionization, luxury units, gentrification.

The language is simply not there.

Even then, Measure S is more evil than you think because written in such a convoluted way that it can be hard to evaluate without an expert opinion on hand.

And don’t think that was by mistake either.

The AIDS Healthcare Foundation is adept at writing initiatives in this manner, like exempting themselves from pricing restrictions in Prop 61 and writing themselves in as state employees to defend Prop 60 (both failed this past November).

When you hear their claims that Measure S still allows affordable housing to be built or is just a two-year moratorium, those are far reaching technicalities at best that are cleverly hidden within the initiative and will have devastating effects on for the next generation.

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Our city’s big problem is our housing crisis.

I shouldn’t have to explain because this is apparent to all Angelenos because we all see the soaring prices whether you own or rent.

We have a high demand for housing because of our low supply of it.

With more people competing for the same places, prices rises and gentrification spreads.

Measure S only exacerbates these problems by cutting our ability to build market rate and affordable housing units.

Let me break down what this initiative actually does.

Projects that ask for height or zoning changes (called “spot zoning”) will not be permitted for a two year moratorium (and there’s a more evil twist to it I’ll mention later).

That means these large scale projects going up in Downtown, Hollywood, the Arts District and Koreatown will be blocked.



It’s no wonder why we’re in a housing crisis (from the City of LA Comprehensive Homeless Strategy).


While Measure S says it’ll only affect 5% of projects, these larger developments actually make up more than 50% of new units being built.

At the same time, improvements to properties will still be allowed as long as they comply with current zoning.

That means if someone buys your neighbor’s house and wants to upsize it to a two story McMansion, they’ll still be able to do that.

It also allows teardowns of apartments or evictions for luxury units because that’ll be all to code as well.

Measure S proponents would like you to think that this will stop developers from eliminating affordable housing, just look at the facts.


Despite all those Yes on S flyers you’ve been getting with Mayor Garcetti, he’s clearly on the Vote No on S side.


The L.A. Times even debunked that notion showing from the 3,000 affordable housing units taken off the market between 2011 and 2015, less than 200 of them would have been saved by Measure S.

If you take a look at L.A.’s showcase for gentrification, Highland Park, you’ll find little that Measure S would have done to stop this change.

You don’t see large developments awkwardly altering the neighborhood’s landscape.

Instead, it’s people who are willing to spend more that have been pricing current residents out.

I’m sure you’ll find old apartments upgraded to luxury status, but once again, Measure S would not stop that too.

Gentification is fueled by housing shortages and by limiting our supply even further, Measure S can only accelerate it.

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The one crutch Measure S supporters hold onto is claiming the exemption for planning and zoning changes for 100% affordable housing projects.

For the average Joe, this all sounds like it’s on the up and up, but read the entire language concerning this:




To most, this sounds harmless until you full understand how wide reaching the General Plan is.

The fact is, almost all projects will need General Plan amendments to move forward meaning Measure S isn’t really an exception at all.

Once again, the L.A. Times pointed out that this would stop a significant portion of housing meant for the homeless which we’re slated to provide through Measure HHH.

Seeing how a number of our veterans are among our homeless and how there is absolutely no language in Measure S written to help them, the call to “Help our Vets” reams of insincerity.

To all my family members and friends that have made great sacrifices to serve our, I could never imagine anyone would so blatantly denigrate your contributions.

I’ve learned these last few weeks that there is no limit to how far the Yes on S team would stoop.

I just hope you won’t be one of those either.


If you want more resources to read up on Measure S, please read the L.A. Times Editorial Board’s position and Shane Phillips’ Top 7 Reasons to Oppose Measure S.