Proposition D, misleadingly called the Rural Preservation and Traffic Control Initiative, is probably the most restrictive no-growth initiative on the ballot, the next being Proposition J.
It pits the Haves against the Have Nots, with the cost of housing rising to unheard-of levels. It will cause vacancies in rental housing to be non-existent and thereby raise rent to such levels that rent control will be the next battleground. Jobs in the building industry, and many other jobs that are created from the economy being healthy, will die in what is nationally one of the longest sustained growth periods.
I am a small developer, and I developed small residential buildings in the city, mostly housing for young professionals and students. I have watched the rental rate on this type of housing move up fast with the restrictions on growth through the Interim Development Ordinance in the city.
I am mapping land for houses in the county that is surrounded by similar houses. If Proposition D passes, I do not know when I will be able to build them. I will face financial hardship on a project that the public wants to buy. Prices for housing in the county are already leaping upward at unheard-of rates, again because of fear that no-growth restrictions will price housing out of reach.
I do not see what good it will do to put San Diego into an economic tailspin. I submit to all San Diegans that we have not ourselves to blame on development, but a void of leadership. The demand for housing in San Diego could have been met with a strong planning response long ago. Instead, the frustrations of San Diegans were "whipped up" to suit the political gains of a few local politicians.
I suggest that San Diegans who have real estate ask themselves how they would have been able to accumulate wealth if these Draconian measures were placed in their path.
To those who are Have Nots, I ask you to think about the cost you will pay in higher rent and how devastating it will be to young people who will have to leave San Diego to buy their first home.
To those San Diegans who own their home and have children, understand that, although you may make quick equity bucks off this initiative, your family will suffer the unnecessary burden of higher costs through high rent for apartments during college years and the eventual price of their first home.
STAN P. DOTTS