LGBT Leaders Rally Against Measure S

Justine Gonzalez speaking at today's LGBT No on Measure S rally. Photos: Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.
Justine Gonzalez speaking at today's LGBT No on Measure S rally. Photos: Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

This afternoon at the Los Angeles LGBT Center Ed Gould Plaza in Hollywood, leaders of L.A.’s Lesbian, Transgender and Gay communities spoke out against Measure S. Measure S, the so-called “Neighborhood Integrity Initiative,” would severely restrict development during an initial two-year moratorium, then via permanent restrictions on certain types of zoning changes.

The housing ban measure has been bankrolled to the tune of more than $4.6 million by the AIDS Heathcare Foundation under the stewardship of Hollywood anti-development crusader Michael Weinstein.

Los Angeles City Controller Ron Galperin, Los Angeles LGBT Center CEO Lorri Jean, Los Angeles County Assessor Jeffrey Prang and city of L.A. Transgender Advisory Committee appointee Justine Gonzalez all passionately advocated a no vote on Measure S.

Galperin repeatedly urged AIDS Healthcare Foundation to stop “squandering millions of dollars” and rededicate itself to its core mission of serving the healthcare needs of people with AIDS. Gonzalez called Measure S “mind-boggling” in that it would harm efforts to house the most vulnerable in the LGBT community. Prang acknowledged issues with planning and development in L.A., but compared the measure’s draconian restrictions to be like performing “surgery with a sledgehammer instead of a scalpel.”

LGBT is currently demolishing an old building to construct hundreds of units of new affordable housing
Across the street from the No on S event, the L.A. LGBT Center is currently demolishing an old building to construct hundreds of units of new affordable housing

Jean drew attention to audible demolition work happening across the street where the LGBT Center is building new affordable housing: 100 apartments for homeless youth, 95 low income senior apartments, and 30 micro apartments for short term homeless shelter. The LGBT Center’s project, located on land formerly zoned light industrial, would not have been possible under Measure S prohibitions.

In other Measure S news: Though Measure purports to preserve L.A. City neighborhoods, ironically its proponents,  the “Coalition to Preserve L.A.” can’t be bothered to actually depict L.A. City neighborhoods in promotional mailers. SBLA reported earlier that the cover image of a Yes on S mailer featured a stock photo of a Beverly Hills street. Further research by Curbed’s Alissa Walker found that a house shown in the same mailer is actually located in the city of Torrance. Perhaps the Coalition to Preserve Torrance and Beverly Hills would be a more fitting name for the pro-S organization.

  • neroden

    Weinstein should be referred to as an “anti-housing crusader” or perhaps a “crusader to make more people homeless”.

  • Toro Castaño

    Then why would the well respected LA Tenants Union back this measure? The Center’s $87M budget has clouded their judgement and they’re misguiding voters. Yes on S

  • Lorenzo Mutia

    I don’t blame LATU for following the will of their base. This measure is divisive and it’s putting folks in a weird place- No on S could look like backing developers even if it prevents housing restrictions, Yes on S means no more for developers but it blows up and causes more problems (or it magically works out in the end- a big gamble nonetheless).

  • NateDogg11

    Measure S is a racist measure that will stop much needed development in South Los Angeles in order to raise property values of elite millionaires.

  • “Well respected” in what sense? They’ve been around for literally less than 2 years and haven’t actually done anything, whereas organizations that have been dedicated to serving low-income tenants and the homeless for decades—United Way, Inner City Law Center, Los Angeles Mission, Downtown Women’s Center, Coalition for Economic Survival, SAJE, ELACC, TRUST South LA, on and on and on—are all opposed. This isn’t about “clouded judgment,” it’s about knowing what it takes to serve the populations these organizations are dedicated to, and the fact that Measure S makes things harder for them to do that, not easier.

  • LoveCoates

    Overdevelopment (of new, unaffordable housing units) is an attempt by racist politicians and greedy racist billionaires to turn L.A. into another Brooklyn/Manhattan and Sam Francisco: playgrounds for wealthy whites.

    Anyone who tells you that adding more units will make housing affordable is lying: look at London, New York, Tokyo, San Francisco… All dense, unaffordable, and overdeveloped. Meanwhile billionaire developers and their corrupt, rich politician friends run off to their uncrowded neighborhoods and fine homes in Beverly Hills and the Hollywood Hills and leave the middle class stuck with the outcomes: skyrocketing rents, no parking, outrageous traffic, noise, pollution…no thanks.

  • Ryan Holman

    Tokyo is one of the most affordable global cities in the world, thanks to a steady increase of supply:

    SF, NY, and London are exactly what happens when a city experiences economic growth but doesn’t add the requisite housing. This isn’t to say that there aren’t other factors, such as speculation (that supply will continue to be restricted), and that when more people follow opportunity and wealth into a city, even more opportunity and wealth is generated.

    We can’t keep sending people out to the Inland Empire and Arizona – it’s not sustainable.

  • I’m curious why you think the fundamental laws of supply and demand somehow do not apply to housing.

  • Toro Castaño

    Now the split is public so I’m more confused than ever and I attended a forum last night with the homeless commissioner.

  • Frank Kobalt

    Oh right: New York’s problem is that there aren’t enough apartments lol

    Does the corporate development lobby think people are actually still falling for this claptrap?

  • Frank Kobalt

    Supply and demand is an economic theory, not a law.

    I’m curious why you think people can’t look and see with their own eyes that adding apartments in New York and San Fran hasn’t done jack squat to lower the cost of housing.

    Peddlers of these tired theories that look great on paper but fail in practice – – trickle down, pure s/d, communism – – always have the same canard: who you gonna believe, me or your lyin eyes?

    Still waiting for anyone to give a real world example of a city with high quality of life where letting developers run rampant has ever made the city more affordable for the middle class. *crickets*


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