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Affordable Housing With Proposition 46

November 04, 2002

I'm going to vote for the housing measure, Proposition 46, although there are serious problems with it.

The fairest housing program would be a negative income tax giving the most money to the poorest. Instead, most of Proposition 46's benefits might go to the middle class, helping only a fraction of those who need help.

The government should build the housing itself. It could create many jobs for the poor and unemployed, with job training and job sharing. Under Proposition 46, a number of already-rich homebuilders will wind up making millions because of inadequate competition and lack of opportunity for others to enter the industry.

Proposition 46 is financed by borrowing, which would result in $2.6 billion of taxpayers' money going to interest.

The amount of housing to be produced by Proposition 46 is woefully inadequate. Millions more affordable homes and apartments are needed. If we are ever to address this great need it should be obvious that progressive taxes, not borrowing, will be vital. Only the federal government can really levy these kinds of taxes, and so it is to that level that we must ultimately look.

Roger Skutt

Los Angeles

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