Express Your Concerns to the City Council
Please attend the only Public Hearing for the Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA) legislation on Thursday February 21, 5:30 PM at Seattle City Hall in Council Chambers. Come early to sign up to testify. Arrive by 4:30 PM to secure an earlier speaking time.
Tell our City Councilmembers to VOTE NO on the MHA Legislation:
Despite input from neighborhoods all over Seattle, the MHA legislation has remained pretty much the same since it was first proposed. The City’s propaganda paints a story that the MHA Legislation is the only way to increase affordable housing in Seattle. What the city does not tell you is that it displaces as much as it replaces, that it does not work to grow the city in a way that simultaneously grows livability and quality of life, and that the fee-in-lieu payments are ridiculously low.
Also, while the “consent package” of amendments being considered for the legislation includes an intention, there is no adequate “claw-back” provision to revert the zoning back to present definitions should the City be sued and the mandatory part of MHA be found to be unlawful (leaving the up-zones in effect, increasing rents and property taxes, without any affordable housing units!).
Come support your neighborhood, your city, and the testimony of your neighbors. Everyone should attend to show the Council the serious commitment of our opposition to MHA at the Public Hearing.
(Childcare will be provided. Please RSVP to Noah An at firstname.lastname@example.org. At the hearing, check in at the sign-in table.)
Save the Dates: If you can, also attend the final consideration of the MHA legislation before the Select Committee on Monday February 25, 2:30 PM and before the Full Council on Monday March 18, 2:00 PM at Seattle City Hall in Council Chambers. Come early to sign up to testify.
Impacts here in Wallingford:
- If MHA passes, properties in the Wallingford Urban Village change from Single-Family to Lowrise-1, Lowrise-2, and even Lowrise-3 zoning (See maps below).
- If MHA passes, 700 single-family homes will be up-zoned to multi-family zones.
- If MHA passes, massive developments will be allowed next to houses. Many of the up-zones change building heights from three stories up to five stories!
- If MHA passes, set-backs and step-backs to preserve yards, trees, and sunlight remain inadequate and may be greatly reduced by up-zoning.
- If MHA passes, no affordable housing units will be required to be built on-site, and the fee-in-lieu payments provide a further discount to developers.
- If MHA passes, it will decrease housing diversity and will drive families out of the urban villages. There are no requirements to build true family-sized three-bedroom housing.
- If MHA passes, it will drive out local small businesses as there are no requirements for affordable leases in new buildings.
- If MHA passes, property taxes increase for all up-zoned properties as adjacent properties are developed.
- If MHA passes, rents will increase as new market-rate units are built.
- If MHA passes, no on-site parking will be required in multi-unit buildings.
- If MHA passes, the true displacement of low- and middle-income residents, and small businesses will go unknown as there is no requirement to track existing affordable housing and leases.
- Whether or not MHA passes, the City (alone among Washington cities) will not have any Impact Fees to fund schools, parks, roads, and public safety!
Why all the fuss? New to the MHA “Grand Bargain” proposal?
- MHA Concerns – Wallingford Community Council.
- MHA Q&A – Seattle Coalition for Affordability, Livability and Equity.
- Political trouble was ‘baked into the cake’ of Seattle’s sweeping upzoning plan – Seattle Times, December 5, 2018.
- The Mandatory Housing Affordability Program will Worsen Seattle’s Housing Crisis – Seattle Times, December 6, 2018.
- Solutions to Seattle’s Housing Emergency by the Community Housing Caucus (a government led task force).
- The Public Notice regarding Rezones, the Comprehensive Plan, and MHA for the Public Hearing.
- The Public Notice on the Addendum to the MHA FEIS for the Public Hearing.
- The MHA FEIS and Addendum may be viewed at http://tinyurl.com/HALA-MHA-EIS.
- Comments on Rezones, the Comprehensive Plan, and MHA will be accepted until March 25, 2019. Send to:
email@example.com (Office of Councilmember Johnson), or
firstname.lastname@example.org (entire Council), or
Councilmember Rob Johnson
PO Box 34025
Seattle, WA 98124-4025
- Comments on the FEIS Addendum may be submitted through Friday February 22, 2019. Send to:
City of Seattle Office of Planning and Community Development
600 Fourth Avenue, Floor 5
PO Box 94788
Seattle, WA 98124-7088