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Mailbag: City Council takes heat from readers

Glendale is a safe, clean city with great schools and so much to do, and these attributes have costs. If you want better, there is a premium to pay.

The cost of living has increased everywhere. Per a city staff report, Glendale falls below other cities in median rents.

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Housing is a human right. Living where you want at the price you want is not.

A rent control ordinance is costly for tenants, landlords and the city (according to the staff report).

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Sixty-two percent of California voters voted against Prop 10. The majority believed that rent control is not the end-all solution. Ballot measures for rent control failed twice.

Many landlords in Glendale are mom-and-pop operations. They have sacrificed instant gratification for long-term security. They are not corporate developers.

A number of landlords have tried to have a conversation with the tenants organization only to be met with hostility, demands, name calling and cursing.

Many landlords are unaware of the county rent freeze effective Sep.18, 2018. Rental income is their livelihoods. How is that fair?

Several multifamily properties in L.A. are lacking proper upkeep. Landlords won’t be incentivized to go the extra mile to beautify and maintain their investment if they are taking a loss.

Some solutions: Add a tax on multifamily properties and/or allocate a portion of the Measure S tax for affordable housing or for housing vouchers to those who truly need them. Give incentives to landlords to offer affordable units in their properties.

Arbi Baghoomian

Glendale

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Now that Measure S has passed, it is time for the Glendale City Council to step up and demonstrate that the increased sales tax of .75% (amounting to $30 million annually in the city’s General Fund) will only be used to support its pre-election claim as the “Glendale Quality of Life and Essential Services Protection Measure.”

The taxpayers must be able to track Measure S funds. These additional funds should be placed in a separate General Fund category titled “Measure S Funds.” These funds cannot be used for any other General Fund expenditures, especially those required to support the out-of-control city employee retirement and pensions.

The passage of Measure S was a victory over those opposed to higher taxes. It’s ironic that some members of the City Council support rent control because so many people can’t afford their rent, but it’s okay to increase their sales taxes.

The cry for support by the City Council and staff that Glendale needed to raise the sales tax before the county or state did is completely ludicrous. If the county and/or state deem that additional funds are required to support public programs, they will find a way to increase the sales tax.

Albert Hofmann

Glendale

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If you ever wanted to actually see what a broken political promise looks like look no further than the corner of Brand Boulevard and Dryden Street. That is the site of the new Aloft Hotel.

All the promises from Ara Najarian, Vartan Gharpetian, Paula Devine, Vrej Agajanian and Zareh Sinanyan that there would be no high-rise development north of Glenoaks have been broken and the results are on full display.

I have watched the steel structure going into place. Then, last week, a new section reaching well above anything else north of Glenoaks has been put in place. It is an abomination.

Take a moment, drive by and decide for yourself if you think this new hotel is in the best interests of that neighborhood. It most certainly is not.

Remember the five names above and the next time you hear a campaign promise from any one of them.

Jim Kussman

Glendale

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