Dealing with Gotcha Evictions in SF

As the housing crisis in San Francisco continues largely unabated so do many of the horror stories of tenants being evicted. We have covered this issue before when discussing the spike in Ellis Act evictions last year, which is a California law that allows property owners to forcibly evict tenets, even in a rent controlled property, […]

The Santa Cruz County Housing Element

Last week marked the first public hearings on the County’s draft Housing Element, an important planning document that outlines how the County expects to accommodate future population growth in terms of additional housing. Under state law, every city and county must prepare a housing element, which is technically a specific part of each local government’s […]

More Regulation for Uber?

It appears that the ride sharing taxi application, Uber, is once again facing regulatory hurdles, this time from the biggest regulatory agency in the State – the California Public Utilities Commission. Normally this agency is better known for rules governing our water rates and power supply, but in the case of Uber it comes down something a […]

An Update on Santa Cruz Water

An Update on Santa Cruz Water

Last October the City of Santa Cruz Water Supply Advisory Committee (WSAC) held an open call for citizen ideas about how to address our water shortfall. This culminated in a day long ideas convention during which over 50 proposals were presented, from recycled water, to quarry storage, to even pulling water out of the ambient […]

Airbnbs in SF: The Saga Moves to the Ballot

Airbnbs in SF: The Saga Moves to the Ballot

Things have been heating up in San Francisco with regards to short term rentals. Part of the new “sharing economy,” sites like Airbnb and Vacation Rental By Owner (VRBO) have been in use for years now and have allowed residents to rent out either a room or an entire unit to short term renters (usually […]

Citizen Tech in Santa Cruz County

Citizen Tech in Santa Cruz County

Today marks the official launch of the Citizen Connect application for the County of Santa Cruz. That’s right, the County has created a mobile application for iOS and Android (iPhone and Google operating systems for the uninitiated) that will allow for citizen reporting of things like potholes, graffiti, abandoned vehicles, and even illegal dumping. County […]

The San Lorenzo: To Paddle or Not to Paddle?

The San Lorenzo: To Paddle or Not to Paddle?

The San Lorenzo River is about to become the subject of a lot more human activity. The river, which runs through the center of Santa Cruz proper and serves as the City’s main water supply, may be open for more human recreational activities. Specifically, the City Council is set to weigh in on the potential […]

Three Reasons Why It’s Old People’s Fault Millennials Don’t #VoteLocal

Three Reasons Why It’s Old People’s Fault Millennials Don’t #VoteLocal

Last week the Knight Foundation released a scathing report on the record low participation of millennials in local government. Why don’t millennials participate in local elections or care all that much about local issues? They don’t know anything about them. And, as a millennial who works four separate jobs that are all related to local […]

Planning for Passenger Rail in Santa Cruz

Planning for Passenger Rail in Santa Cruz

Last Thursday the Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission presented the results of a feasibility study evaluating the potential for passenger rail service along the now publicly owned rail line. The study looked at a range of metrics for evaluating seven separate service scenarios, including up front capital costs, annual upkeep and maintenance costs, expected ridership, the […]

Should Union Employees be Exempt Under Minimum Wage Requirements?

There has been a lot of talk about the minimum wage lately, both nationally and locally. And now with Los Angeles joining the likes of Seattle, San Francisco, Berkeley, Oakland, and Richmond in pursuing a $15.00/hour floor, the debate is beginning to narrow down to specifics. Foremost of these concerns is whether or not union […]