Measure V represents the ideal of grassroots democracy in action. A group of ordinary folks facing a serious problem realized that this problem was bigger than any of them individually. They realized rents were rising fast in many mobile home parks, and that this threatened the already meager affordable housing supply. So they approached local officials asking for a solution. They were rebuffed.
This type of situation is why the ballot initiative process exists. And the rent stabilization advocates took advantage of that process in just the right way. They did thorough research, engaged experts and wrote an ordinance which would help stabilize rents while avoiding unintended side effects. They gathered the required signatures and got it on the ballot.
Measure V is a good idea, proposed by good people, and it will be good for our county. Humboldt County voters should vote yes on Measure V.
Colin Fiske, McKinleyville
Measure V seems to be a no-brainer. Help seniors? But when you apply a little brain-power, Measure V proves to be an unnecessary initiative ordinance that could remain on the books forever.
As the park manager at Thunderbird Mobile Estates, I have reviewed the application through purchase process of many 55 and older seniors buying and moving into mobile homes because they are affordable and fit their downsizing or closer-to-family needs. These folks usually pay cash and are not anywhere close to being "thrown out on the street" — the scariest and central untruthful basis of the whole yes campaign.
Our longest term residents enjoy rent rates well below $350 because we have voluntarily kept rent increases close to the CPI for more than 40 years — even skipping increases in the recent economic downturn.
Don't be misled by emotional slogans and trendy vilifications.
Please, vote no on Measure V.
John Bradley, McKinleyville
An ad appeared in the Times-Standard (Oct. 30, page C-6) that exhibits a new low in local campaigning. The anti-Measure V people are trying to diminish the clear validity of Measure V by smearing its original proponent.
It is false, but that has not deterred these unscrupulous people from putting such Roveian misinformation out there. After all, what are their thousands of dollars for if not to impugn decency and further drive our society into the cesspool of partisan politics? Saddest of all, is not that unscrupulous people will present an ad such as this, but that it will distract voters from the merits of a sorely needed measure.
Larry Hourany, McKinleyville
Amid the election noise, please consider what's actually in Measure V. It affects owner-occupied mobile homes in parks with more than 10 spaces. People in these parks have paid for the roofs over their heads. They own the four walls around them. They are homeowners, who rent only the land beneath them. Because their homes are difficult to move, they are "captive" homeowner-renters.
Measure V creates modest, fair rules limiting fee and rent increases in these parks. It also protects the park owners, with multiple pathways to reasonable rent increases.
Groups representing tens of thousands of Humboldt residents signed the ballot argument in favor of Measure V. The Humboldt Senior Action Coalition, the Democratic Party in Humboldt, the Green Party in Humboldt, and the North Coast People's Alliance all reviewed the merits of Measure V in August and have been backing it ever since.
Please vote yes on V!
Carrie Peyton Dahlberg, Trinidad
I write to support Measure V, land rent stabilization for mobile home owners. I and my neighbors are in the unpleasant situation of being inundated by apparently unlimited PR attempts from the opposing side. We understand the big money and questionable methods are not from our own local mom and pop mobile home park owners, but from large park owner interests outside our county.
These outside interests are afraid that if Humboldt votes Yes on V, protecting seniors, veterans and others who need the stability of an affordable home, this good idea of land rent stabilization will likely spread to other areas, too. And that is what the large multi-park owners don't want. I trust the judgment of our Humboldt voters to see through the fog of words out there, and give your yes vote to the very worthy and fiscally-responsible cause that is Measure V.
Cathy Hanafi, McKinleyville