Neighborhood Integrity Initiative turns in 100K signatures for ballot measure

Anti-development initiative could be officially certified as early as next month

Aug.August 25, 2016 08:30 AM

Supporters of the Neighborhood Integrity Initiative turned in nearly 104,000 signatures to the city clerk’s Wednesday, effectively ensuring its place on the March ballot.

The ballot measure aims to curb development through a two-year moratorium on projects of a certain size, a ban on “spot zoning” and other amendments. 

Spearheaded by an affiliate of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, the initiative could be officially certified for the ballot as early as next month — unless City Council enact provisions of the measure within 30 days.

Supporters of the initiative claim that large developments are displacing long-time residents. Its opponents — a coalition of labor groups, affordable housing advocates and anti-poverty nonprofit organizations — argue that housing development is essential for the creation of affordable housing.

Last week, initiative backers told Mayor Eric Garcetti that they would drop their campaign if he agreed to a number of rules, including the complete ban of closed-door meetings. Garcetti said he agreed with many of their views, but cannot offer anything beyond letting the public know about these closed-meetings before they take place.

“Shutting down new housing construction would devastate Los Angeles’ economy and put thousands of people out of work,” Gary Toebben, president and CEO of the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, which has endorsed the anti-initative coalition, previously told The Real Deal. “It would also hobble our ability to address our homelessness crisis.” [LABJ]Cathaleen Chen

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