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April 19, 2015


Bruce Dickinson

Joe, to your most recent post above on "someone who isn't afraid to state their observations weigh in", all Bruce Dickinson will say is, do you notice that the biggest sourpusses on the BV don't live in or have a permanent stake in Burlingame? Not saying that all non-Burlingamers are sourpusses, but that the sourpusses on this site seem to be lacking in a permanent Burlingame stake.

Reminds me of a friend of mine who a while ago was asking me why I don't shop at Whole Foods, because shopping there is better due to the health options. I thought about it a minute and said, ya know what? Have you noticed anyone in Whole Foods looking happy? It's either this intense focus on health that makes the shoppers not indulge in the things they like that results in negativity, or the store, because of its nature, attracts a certain elitist who is only in there to go in and out, get their health food and go play Lance Armstrong on the weekends...strictly business, as they say. The few times that I do go to a grocery store (I usually have one of my assistants do this), I like to go to a place that gives off a happy vibe, which is why you may catch a glimpse of Bruce Dickinson at Mollie Stones once in a while. Oh, and they have options like Cherry Coke and Hershey bars, which make this Dickinson quite a happy camper!

Point being is that misery loves company and I think most that live in Burlingame have a positive attitude and why shouldn't they, as they live in a dynamite town that both legendary and fun!


Humm, what a very interesting observation! I cannot say that I've noticed otherwise, but maybe they are looking grim, because Whole Foods has tended to not be entirely forthcoming with their "local" food policies and the GMO issue. Go to Earthbeam, instead. I see lots of Happy Pappy faces there, and David is the most honest storekeeper in the business. Mollies is fabulous, too. Why are people so happy there?? Because they don't have to wait for the one open check out line to run through 10 people before opening the next one. Plus, he hires local kids, just like Earthbeam does. I gave up on WF a few years ago, except for literally a couple of items unavailable elsewhere (and I save on gas money, to boot). Enough of the "grim faces", no?


We had another bit of deceptive reporting in today's Daily Journal under the headline:

Fund established for Burlingame renters: Effort aims to benefit those grappling with climbing cost of living

Reporter Austin Walsh was apparently tricked by very-soon-to-be-former Mayor and ex-Councilwoman-as-of-tonight Terry Nagel and Walsh wrote:

Burlingame residents struggling to afford rising rents may look to a fund established by local officials for a little additional assistance during the holiday season.

Burlingame Mayor Terry Nagel and Cindy Cornell, an advocate for the rights of local renters, worked with Samaritan House in San Mateo to set up a collection fund of resources set aside to benefit Burlingame renters who are having difficulty affording the escalating cost of living locally.

Contributors to the Burlingame Family Fund can select to make charitable donations toward essential services, holiday gifts or whatever other need they prefer by contacting Samaritan House, a nonprofit service agency.

Nagel said the tremendous need she has seen in the community while collaborating with Cornell’s agency, the Burlingame Advocates for Renter Protections, compelled her to get involved and start the collection fund.

“These people need help now and they are facing a desperate time in the holiday season that won’t be very merry,” she said.

During her time working in the community, Nagel said she has seen residents constantly faced with the difficult decision of using a limited pool of resources to pay for rent, meals, health care or a variety of other essential services.

-----Sorry Austin, the only super-short-timer official here is Nagel. In fact, the piece goes on to note

Once contributions are made to the fund, Nagel said workers at Samaritan House are trusted to distribute the resources appropriately.

Cynthia Cornell isn't an official of anything except a group of 8 to 10 biased, closed-minded who won't even allow real elected officials to come to their little meetings.

My advice to Bart Charlow, CEO of Samaritan House, who I do not know, is be careful who you "get into bed with" since you may end of with a case of fleas that are not easy to get rid of.


By the way, the full article is here:


Samaritan House Fundraiser Tonight at 6pm.

And, if you'd like to support Samaritan House, you can join the San Mateo County Republican Party Annual Christmas Party tonight, Tuesday December 8 from 6:00 to 9:00 pm in Hillsborough.

Tickets are only $20 each, with $10 being donated to Samaritan House.

You can email The Party’s 2nd Vice Chair (Volunteers and Voter Registration), John McDowell at Johnmcd@hotmail.com for the street address.


Great idea. I have no problem with the charity or the overall goals--one just has to be careful of who one associates with.

Bruce Dickinson

Great idea... maybe Bruce Dickinson will wear his "Trump for Prez" jacket to the Christmas party and really get the party hoppin with a pre-Primary win celebration! So long my kind of eggnog is served, ya know what I mean?


Almost half of renters in the Bay Area are paying more than 30 percent of their income on housing, but that is slightly less than the percentage of cost-burdened renters nationwide, according to a biennial survey released Wednesday by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.

One reason for this surprising finding: Although Bay Area rents are higher than the national average, incomes are also higher, by a slightly larger percentage. And the study looks at housing costs paid by all renters, including those living in rent-controlled apartments. So the median rents in the study look more reasonable than the eye-popping asking rents you see in some surveys and stories.


Construction workers work on the Booker T. Washington Community Service Center, Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015, in San Francisco, Calif. The center is located at 800 Presidio Ave. S.F. affordable housing proposal bogs down at City Planning Jose Antonio Cen, a baker at La Victoria bakery, heads towards the kitchen area, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2015, in San Francisco, Calif. How the fade of S.F.’s middle class affects a slice of the city This past Fed Ex van is offered for six hundred dollars a month on Craigslist in San Francisco, Calif., on Tuesday, September 29, 2015. $600 to live in a FedEx truck? S.F. rentals get (more) ridiculous Supervisor Scott Weiner listens to members of the public speak during the ethics hearing for Mirkarimi at City Hall in San Francisco, Calif., Tuesday, October 9, 2012. Airbnb, other short-term rentals may get closer scrutiny in S.F. Ivy Gao's son Sampson, 3, reads in their unit in a Chinatown single-room occupancy hotel. Families live jammed into Chinatown rooms, with no hope of
The Harvard study considers anyone paying 30 percent or more of their monthly income on housing (rent plus utilities) to be cost-burdened. “Thirty percent is the traditional standard for affordability,” said Jonathan Spader, a senior research associate at the center.

By this measure, 48.2 percent of renters in the San Francisco metro area are burdened, compared with 49.3 percent nationwide. The metro area includes San Francisco, Marin, San Mateo, Alameda and Contra Costa counties. In the San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara metro area, 47.2 percent of renters are burdened.

The percentage of renters who are moderately burdened — meaning they pay 30 to 50 percent of income on housing — is slightly higher in the Bay Area than the national average. But the percentage who are severely burdened, meaning they pay 50 percent or more of income on housing — is slightly lower.

The Harvard study was based on income and housing numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2014 American Community Survey.

It found that the median rent in the San Francisco metro area was $1,540, but the median was $1,750 for people who had moved into their unit in the past 12 months compared with $1,460 for people who had been there for more than a year.


John Horgan: Rent control? What about help for the buyers/owners?
By John Horgan for the San Mateo County Times
12/09/2015 http://www.mercurynews.com/news/ci_29224784/john-horgan:-rent-control?-what-about-help-for-the-buyersowners?

"Over the past year or two, pressure from those who rent places to live on the pricey Peninsula, along with their activist friends, has been growing.

There is a popular mantra that cries out for fairness as rental costs soar in a rising property market that shows few signs of abating. There is a strong implication that renters are the only ones out there who struggle to maintain a place to call home.

Rent control (or something very much like it), mandated by local government, is the perceived solution. This all looks interesting on paper.

But what about the people who have recently purchased homes or condos, or who want to do so, here in the northern reaches of Silicon Valley? What about them?

Have you checked out the sales prices lately? They are sky-high. Yes, mortgage interest rates continue to rest at historic lows; but, even with that, many folks find it impossible to find a big enough down payment to make their anticipated monthly borrowing payments "affordable."

Frankly, "affordable in San Mateo County" has become something of an oxymoron when a million-dollar house is considered a dirt-cheap bargain.

Sure, we can have some sympathy for longtime renters who are finding it tough to survive here. But owners, and potential owners, have their own set of issues to contend with in this unreal market.

How soon we forget about what happened just seven or eight years ago when thousands of local buyers found they were unable to make their mortgage payments on homes or condos that had lost considerable value during the drastic economic downturn.

We didn't hear many, if any, calls for rent control back then. Far from it."


NEWSFLASH for Austin Walsh at the Daily Journal - Terry Nagel is no longer either Mayor or on the City Council. Hello? Austin? You there?

Tenants of the Burlingame Hotel, some of area’s most vulnerable residents who faced losing their home in the middle of the holiday season, have been granted a slight reprieve.

Under an agreement with ownership and management negotiated primarily by Mayor Terry Nagel, residents of the single room occupancy hotel may stay through the end of January at no charge, and have been offered an additional $1,000 in relocation assistance.


If you cannot get the basic facts right how can anyone trust the rest of the piece? By the way, perhaps a "balanced" article would address the feasibility of Section 8 housing right above one of the most desirable retail streets on the Peninsula. I won't hold my breath for that article.


Nagel cannot be gone soon enough. We should congratulate the Karps for buying her off so cheap. Thats not news if you have been watching her as long as I have. It's all talk and press coverage.


Am breathing a sigh of relief that Terry blah blah Nagel is gone. I hear that city personnel are happy too.

She was an expert at blowing her horn and sending reams of press releases to the local papers.

She wasted so much time blabbering on and on endlessly. Made for very long council nights.

Good riddance. Christmas came early. Thank you Santa.


Terry Blah Blah. I like it. You get a gold star.


In reaction to a post on Nextdoor Neighborhood about rent increases of 34% at NorthPark, Burlingame Advocates for Renter Protections asked people to sign their petition. Another commenter replied in part with:

"By the way rents have already started to come done since last summer. The rents will only go down further in the next 18 months as the supply of new housing units out paces job growth. Price controls never have good outcome."

I then followed with this comment which I will repost here:

"... if rents in Burlingame do not level off, the main cause will be the threat of future "rent stabilization", i.e. a feeling of "raise them now while you can". The Law of Unintended Consequences is in full effect."


From today's SF Chronicle comes the natural consequences of messing with a market-based approach to housing:

Trevor McNeil and Sarah Montoya, both 35, would love to buy a home in San Francisco, but like many young couples, they make too much money to qualify for a below-market-rate unit and too little to afford a market-rate one.

So for now, they are stuck in their one-bedroom, third-floor walk-up apartment in the Sunset District, with twin boys who were born in January and a 2-year old girl.

McNeil and Montoya didn’t qualify for a below-market-rate unit in the past because both were working. McNeil earns a little under $100,000 a year teaching middle school in Menlo Park.

They thought they’d qualify this year because Montoya quit her job as a hospital chaplain to watch the kids. But when the couple went for counseling, they were told they still wouldn’t qualify because the city would average Montoya’s past earnings and include it in this year’s income.


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