Open letter to Eureka voters:

As your friends and neighbors, we urge you not to sign the “City of Eureka Housing for All and Downtown Vitality Initiative.” Despite its name, the initiative would stop the construction of affordable housing and would put the city in legal jeopardy, risking millions of dollars of state grant funding. Eureka deserves better.

Eureka faces a housing affordability crisis. Under state law, Eureka is required to plan for housing construction through its “Housing Element,” a component of its larger General Plan. The Housing Element outlines the strategies the city will undertake to facilitate new housing construction and is approved by the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). The City of Eureka developed in partnership with HCD a program to release publicly-owned lands for housing. Through working with non-profit housing developers, including the Wiyot Tribe, Eureka is on track to build 199 new apartments — if the proposed initiative doesn’t stop the city first.

Invalidate Housing Element: The initiative would amend Eureka’s General Plan to create two new “overlay” zones. The first overlay zone would stop the development of apartments on downtown parking lots by prohibiting the loss of any parking through redevelopment of the sites, functionally making housing construction impossible on these sites. The second overlay zone would rezone the former site of Jacobs Middle School and would allow dense multifamily development on this site. This “upzone” is misleading as well, as Eureka does not control the former Jacobs campus, Eureka City Schools has declined an offer by the City to purchase the site, and Eureka City Schools is in negotiations with the California Highway Patrol to purchase and develop the site.

Loss of Affordable Housing: The proposed initiative would stop the development of five lots already approved for affordable housing development. In total, the initiative would threaten the construction of at least 199 total units. Additionally, the initiative would prohibit the development of the Eureka Regional Transit and Housing Center (EaRTH Center), a mass transit hub paired with apartments for healthcare workers and other affordable housing.

Legal Chaos: The initiative would throw the city into legal chaos by invalidating its Housing Element. Because the Housing Element is a core component of the Eureka’s General Plan, that central governing document might also be voided. In turn, Eureka could lose its power to regulate local land use decisions until a costly and thorough amendment process can be completed.

Loss of Grant Funding: By invalidating the Housing Element, Eureka would lose out on substantial grant funding that it regularly relies upon for affordable housing, city planning, and mass transit.

If you are approached by a signature gatherer, politely decline to sign the anti-housing initiative.

If you have signed the initiative by accident, please complete this form and return it to Humboldt County Elections to remove your name from the petition. If you would like to join your name to the growing list of friends and neighbors concerned about this initiative, please complete this form.

Susan Seaman
Natalie Arroyo
Deborah Dukes
Aubrey Richeson
Jenna Catsos
Jasmin Segura
Genevieve Serna
Gary Falxa
Brian Heaton
Cathy Chandler-Klein
Randy Terra
Maggie Kraft
Althea Christensen
G. Mario Fernandez
Leslie Castellano
Desiree Davenport
Tory Starr
Evan Morden
Beth Herrmann
Emily Sinkhorn
Stevie Luther
Caroline Griffith
Alexander Farrell
Tom Arnall
Solomon Everta
Linda Atkins
Tom Wheeler
Kathy Srabian
Paul Hilton
Patti Rose
David Cobb
Maxwell Despard
Julie Ryan
Marla Joy
Ruthi Engelke
Fhyre Phoenix
Kathleen Kelcey
Meredith Maier
Claire Perricelli
Patricia Thomas
Robin Praszker
Joseph Carter
Derek Howard
Erin Kelly
Jenn Taylor
Carolan Raleigh-Halsing
Charis Arlett
Jason Lopiccolo
Kayla DeCarli
Tess Yinger
Bob Service
Pam Service
Hannah Atwood
Kelly Johnson
Aimee Hennessy
Amber Shows
Kim Bergel
Leila Roberts
Esther Trosow
Mike Cipra
Erin Degenstein
Alicia Hamann
Mary Hurley
Mary Keehn
Peter LaVallee
Kathleen Moxon
Mary Kate Durkee
Rio McFarland
Ron Kuhnel
James Kloor
Joel Ziegler
Julie Fulkerson
Lissie Rydz
Jonny Maiullo
Kathy Johanson
Aisha Cervantes-Cissna
Peggy Dickinson
Miranda de Silva
Nancy LaVallee
Randy Carrico
Nancy M. Arroyo
Pat Kanzler
Libby Maynard
Tina Garsen
Colin Fiske
William Childs
Mary Ruffcorn-Barragan
Sabrina Grandia
Geoffrey Robinson
Kimberley White
Helene Rouvier
Jerry Koval
Luis Chabolla
Jan Rowen
George Clark
Kyoko Clark
Jody Himango
Meredyth Phillips
Todd Rowe
Bonnie Mesinger
Jeremiah Webb