Editorial: Senator Yee’s SB863 gets it right
Saving the city of Half Moon Bay from itself is a dirty, thankless job.
You’re likely to be slammed for "public relations" by the Review’s editor and for being "morally bankrupt" by the anonymous wingnuts on its website when you propose a decent, practical plan for helping the city.
Senator Leland Yee’s SB863 will allocate $10 million to help the city buy as parkland Beachwood and the 22 acres on Pilarcitos Creek financed by the Peninsula Open Space Trust.
The city will still be out a few million in the Beachwood lawsuit. That sounds about right. The city’s strategy for getting out its obligations by gutting decades of environmental law was appallingly cynical. That the Review’s editor calls it "wise" says a lot about his notion of wisdom.
Yee’s bill will buy the land, but not build the parks for the city. But there’s no reason it should. It does leave Half Moon Bay with the ability to finance its new park development—if it has the will. It’s time for the city to commit to building decent parks for its residents, rather than dithering over who gets the credit.
The parks money the city is receiving was intended to complement and encourage affordable housing. That seems fair. Half Moon Bay already has one of the highest affordable housing rates in the county, but it has little real parkland.
Yee did more than right by Half Moon Bay, when you consider their behavior in the last six months. The city misled Yee about its threat of bankruptcy, blindsided him with a toxic bill designed to enrich a single individual at the expense of the law, slandered the Coastal Commission staff, and secretly shared the expenses for its Sacramento disinformation campaign with another interested party.
There are cities all over California that are needier than Half Moon Bay. If their Sacramento delegation can get SB863 passed, AB1991’s supporters should stop whining and say thank you.