Sacramento Housing Alliance expresses support in fair housing lawsuit against Elk Grove, says Oak Rose denial was 'immoral'

California Attorney General Rob Bonta said Elk Grove has "shirked" its responsibility. | 

A leading advocate for the enforcement of fair housing laws today commended the decision by California Attorney General Rob Bonta to file a lawsuit against Elk Grove. Yesterday Bonta said the State of California would seek a judicial remedy against Elk Grove for violating state fair housing laws related to their July 2022 denial of a supportive housing project.

In a press release this morning, the Sacramento Housing Alliance commended Bonta and the state for taking Elk Grove to court (see the letter below). The SHA said the Elk Grove mayor and city council's decision denying the 66-unit supportive housing project in Elk Grove's Old Town district "wasn't just immoral; it was also illegal."   

"We are so excited about the potential outcome of getting 66 desperately needed permanent supportive homes online for formerly homeless individuals," SHA Board President Cathy Creswell said in the statement. "The crisis is too desperate, and literally, people are dying on our streets. We are so grateful to HCD and the attorney general for their leadership and aggressive efforts to hold local governments accountable."

Bonta sent a letter on March 16 to Elk Grove Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen, threatening a fair housing lawsuit if the city did not take corrective action within 30 days. Even though the topic was discussed in the city council's closed session, and the city claimed they were trying to negotiate a different location for the project, the mayor and the city made no public statements on the controversy.

In his press conference announcing yesterday's lawsuit, Bonta said Elk Grove has shirked (2:20 mark in the video below) its responsibility to help address homelessness. 

"Instead, they have chosen to stifle affordable housing projects and discriminate against lower-income families and knowingly violate state housing laws," Bonta said. 

Interestingly, Mayor Singh-Allen, who frequently appears for TV news cameras, has maintained a low profile during the imbroglio. Instead, the city has issued statements and, as discussed in various city council meetings, has banned the four other city council members from making statements to the media.   

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1 comment

Renegade said...

The city has banned the council members from speaking publicly to the media? What is this, Nazi Germany? Last time I read the Constitution the 1st Amendment guarantied every American the right of free speech.
I've heard of the mayor's preference for unanimous decisions from the council on all issues before it, which is another attempt to quash the fundamental rights of free thought, open discussion and non-violent dissent. If these councilmen agree to the mayor's edict, their voices are moot, they serve no purpose other than to "puppet" the mayor's position on every issue before their tribunal. They need to think for themselves, support their constituents, especially if they are opposed to the mayor's views and to have their thoughts memorialized as part of the public record. Democracy is not about adherence to a particular view, it's about sharing different views and not being ridiculed, jailed or killed for doing so.
Councilmen: find a spine, speak for yourselves, speak what you believe, don't let the mayor quash your feelings and beliefs. Otherwise, step down, your serve no democratic purpose.

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