San Mateo County

Local chapter

San Mateo County is home to some of the wealthiest communities in the country and plagued by extreme housing scarcity. While jobs boomed for decades, home building didn’t keep pace β€” resulting in an astounding 17:1 jobs-housing imbalance, the worst in the Bay Area. The burden of the housing shortage is felt most acutely by low-income residents who are often forced to choose between being displaced or enduring unsafe or overcrowded living conditions.
For too long, the loudest voices against change have dominated local politics in San Mateo County, so Peninsula for Everyone is uniting to push for local progress. After an endorsement process where members evaluated candidates’ questionnaire responses, interviews, and records, a record 20 candidates were endorsed for 11 different city council races. Electing these housing champions will help to move San Mateo County forward towards being a more equitable and inclusive region.

November 2020 Election Cheat Sheet

Explanations for endorsements are below.

California State Senate

District 11
βœ… Scott Wiener

California State Assembly

District 24
βœ… Marc Berman

California State Ballot Propositions

Prop 15
βœ… Yes
Prop 16 *
βœ… Yes
Prop 17 *
βœ… Yes
Prop 18 *
βœ… Yes
Prop 19
βœ… Yes
Prop 20 *
β›” No
Prop 21 *
βœ… Yes
Prop 22 *
β›” No
Prop 25 *
βœ… Yes

Regional Ballot Measures

Measure RR
βœ… Yes

Belmont

City Council, At-large
βœ… Davina Hurt
βœ… Tom McCune

Colma

City Council, At-large
βœ… John Goodwin

Daly City

City Council, At-large
βœ… Juslyn Manalo

East Palo Alto

City Council, At-large
βœ… Lisa Gauthier
βœ… Stewart Hyland
βœ… Carlos Romero

Foster City

City Council, At-large
βœ… Patrick Sullivan
βœ… Sam Hindi

Menlo Park

City Council, District 3
βœ… Jen Wolosin

Redwood City

City Council, District 1
βœ… Jeff Gee
City Council, District 3
βœ… Isabella Chu
City Council, District 4
βœ… Michael Smith
City Council, District 7
βœ… Alicia Aguirre

San Bruno

Mayor
βœ… Rico Medina
City Council, At-large
βœ… Michael Salazar

San Carlos

City Council, At-large
βœ… JT Eden

San Mateo

City Council, At-large
βœ… Amourence Lee
Measure R
β›” No
Measure Y
β›” No

South San Francisco

City Council, District 2
βœ… Mark Nagales
City Council, District 4
βœ… James Coleman

* Endorsements marked with an asterisk are made by only by the local chapter. All other endorsements are from both the local chapter and YIMBY Action.

Endorsement Explainer

More coming soon!

California State Senate

CA State Senate District 11

Scott Wiener

Senator Scott Wiener fights every day as our representative in Sacramento to address our housing crisis. He’s consistently authored the boldest pro-housing legislation in the state, pushing the entire legislature to truly face our housing shortage. Senator Wiener has passed laws to ensure that California’s cities become more welcoming and inclusive by enabling them to build more housing. From major streamlining bills to ADU legislation, Scott has been at the forefront of every effort to improve housing in California. If re-elected, he will continue to fight for a future where there is abundant housingβ€”affordable to working people and familiesβ€”near good jobs and transit.

Endorsed by SF YIMBY, Peninsula for Everyone, and YIMBY Action.

California State Ballot Propositions

βœ… YES

Proposition 15: Schools and Communities First

Proposition 15 will get rid of property tax breaks for big businesses, and put billions of dollars towards schools and local services.

Currently, thanks to 1978’s Prop 13, owners pay property taxes based on the price they originally paid for that real estateβ€”typically a lot less than what it’s worth today. Prop 15 will roll this back for many large businesses, raising property taxes to be assessed based on the property’s current (probably much higher) market value. Prop 15 will raise approximately $6.5 to $11.5 billion β€” 60% for cities, counties and special districts, and 40% for schools and community colleges. Homeowners and businesses with under $3 million in California property will be exempted, along with farm land.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone and YIMBY Action.

βœ… YES

Proposition 16: Allows Affirmative Action

Proposition 16 would repeal a ban on affirmative action in public institutions that was enacted in 1996. Women and people of color still face discrimination in hiring, employment, contracting, and education. Prop 16 will enable government agencies to begin dismantling structural racism and sexism.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone.

βœ… YES

Proposition 17: Allows Parolees Right to Vote

California has the opportunity to expand voting rights to people on parole with Proposition 17, something that is already legal in 19 other states. There are currently 50,000 Californians who have completed their prison sentences and can’t vote, which is a racist disenfranchisement of poor people and people of color who are more likely to be convicted of crimes and lose their voting rights. Furthermore, finding housing is often difficult for people who have completed their prison sentences, and they are then not even able to vote for politicians who can represent them and work to address their housing needs. YIMBYs are dedicated to promoting anti-racism and fair democratic representation, and Prop 17 would significantly advance both of those goals. We strongly recommend a YES vote on Proposition 17.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone.

βœ… YES

Proposition 18: Expands Youth Voting

Prop 18 would allow 17-year-olds to vote in primaries and special elections if they will turn 18 before the November election. Adults are more likely to be reliable voters if given the opportunity to vote as minor. Establishing greater voter participation among young people, who are disproportionately impacted by the housing and climate crises, is important for building this movement’s power.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone.

βœ… YES

Proposition 19: Changes Some Property Tax Transfers and Exemptions

Proposition 19 adjusts the rules of 1978’s Proposition 13. While many YIMBYs would like to see major reform to Prop 13, this is a small adjustment to California’s property tax rules. Prop 19 reduces tax subsidies for people who inherit multiple homes, and shifts them to people downsizing homes or who are moving due to natural disasters. Any excess tax revenue from reducing the multiple-homes subsidy goes to wildfire protection.

Currently, for homeowners who want to downsize to a smaller home, if it costs more than the original price of their big home, they can end up paying more taxes (depending on their county’s rules). Prop 19 makes sure that people who are down-sizing homes are protected from tax increases. Ideally, this allows long-time homeowners to downsize and allow others who need more space to move into their larger homes. Prop 19 also extends to people who are moving due to natural disasters, so they don’t face a tax hike on top of the trauma of losing their homes.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone and YIMBY Action.

β›” NO

Proposition 20: Increases Criminal Sentencing and DNA Collection

Proposition 20 would undermine criminal justice reforms and waste taxpayer money on prisons. Increased prison spending could force draconian cuts to rehabilitation, schools, mental health, and services for the unhoused. The harsh sentences of Prop 20 could put teenagers and people of color behind bars for years for low-level, non-violent crimes. Housing justice and criminal justice are linked: formerly incarcerated people are 10 times as likely to be homeless. California should be building homes, not prisons.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone.

βœ… YES

Proposition 21: Expands Options for Local Rent Control

Prop 21 would help to provide more housing stability to Californians by giving cities more options to limit rent increases. Prop 21 sets sensible guardrails for rent stabilization by exempting small landlords with only one or two properties as well as new construction less than 15 years old. Ensuring housing stability is critical for homeless prevention and community wellness.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone.

β›” NO

Measure 22: Classifies Rideshare and Delivery Drivers as Contract Workers

Prop 22 would provide a special exemption to labor laws for app-based taxi and delivery services. Allowing app companies to use exploitative labor practices will contribute to increased ghgs and decreased transit ridership. Prop 22 is additionally concerning due to a requirement that future gig worker protections would require a 7/8ths majority to pass through the legislature.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone.

βœ… YES

Proposition 25: Eliminates Cash Bail System

Proposition 25 replaces money bail with a risk assessment for suspects awaiting trial. Currently, if a person is unable to pay bail, they are incarcerated while awaiting trial. Money bail results in innocent low-income people being needlessly incarcerated. Incarceration, a risk factor for homelessness, should be reserved for violent offenses.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone.

Regional Ballot Measures

βœ… YES

Measure RR

Measure RR is a β…› percent sales tax providing dedicated funding to save Caltrain from shutdown during Covid and to deliver more frequent service when the pandemic lifts, with better all-day, all-week service for commuting and many other types of trips, and better connections with other local and regional services, supporting an longterm 3-4x increase in ridership. Caltrain service is essential to address the housing shortage in our area – new housing for all income levels along the line from San Francisco through San Jose and Gilroy depend on continuing and improving Caltrain service.

Caltrain is also essential to environmental goals. Pre-Covid, Caltrain kept 4 lanes worth of cars off of freeways and roads, removing 400 million driving miles per year, which would grow by about 240 million with improvements funded by the tax, removing 110 additional metric tons of carbon emissions each day. While a sales tax is regressive, Measure RR would fund unprecedented new equity policies and programs to diversify Caltrain’s ridership. The grassroots support from YIMBY Action and other partners would likely be the margin of victory.

Endorsed by Peninsula for Everyone, SF YIMBY, South Bay YIMBY, and YIMBY Action.

Belmont

Belmont City Council

At-large

Davina Hurt

Councilmember Davina Hurt is a strong housing supporter; her work on the council included passage of the Firehouse Square development, bringing 80 new affordable homes to Belmont!

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Belmont City Council

At-large

Tom McCune

We also proudly endorse Councilmember Tom McCune who supports streamlining and simplifying the housing development process, making it easier for Belmont to welcome new neighbors.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Colma

Colma City Council

At-large

John Goodwin

Colma is a tiny town, but has a big housing champion in Councilmember John Goodwin! John supported Colma Veteran’s Villiage, which brought much needed affordable housing to the city, and understands the need for zoning reform.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Daly City

Daly City City Council

At-large

Juslyn Manalo

In Daly City, our members endorsed Councilmember Juslyn Manalo! Juslyn has had a strong track record of supporting both housing and renter protections, and we enthusiastically recommend her for another term.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

East Palo Alto

East Palo Alto City Council

At-large

Carlos Romero

Councilmember Carlos Romero brings decades of experience building affordable housing and working to advance equitable housing policies. His advocacy and championship of housing issues at both the local and regional level is unparalleled. We strongly support his reelection.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

East Palo Alto City Council

At-large

Lisa Gauthier

We strongly support Lisa Gauthier in her re-election campaign! As a long time resident, she’s seen East Palo Alto become more unaffordable and has supported increasing housing while ensuring existing residents are not displaced.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

East Palo Alto City Council

At-large

Stewart Hyland

As a former organizer for equity group Faith in Action and the current Organizing Director for the Housing Leadership Council of San Mateo County, Stewart Hyland’s immense experience fighting for housing justice makes him an ideal candidate for City Council.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Foster City

Foster City City Council

At-large

Patrick Sullivan

We support Patrick Sullivan in his bid to make Foster City more housing friendly. Patrick also provides welcome knowledge on transportation issues.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Foster City City Council

At-large

Sam Hindi

We’re thrilled to support the re-election of Councilmember Sam Hindi, who has proven himself to be the strongest voice on the Foster City City Council for housing and equity issues.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Menlo Park

Menlo Park City Council

District 3

Jen Wolosin

In Menlo Park’s District 3 race, we’re pleased to support Jen Wolosin. Jen has long been an advocate for bike safety, in addition to housing and renter protections. She shares a vision for a more equitable Menlo Park and a more sustainable region.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Redwood City

Redwood City City Council

District 1

Jeff Gee

In District 1, our members endorsed Jeff Gee. Jeff served previously on the Redwood City Council, and where he was known as a strong supporter of new housing and a champion of the Downtown Precise Plan.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Redwood City City Council

District 3

Isabella Chu

Isabella Chu is a champion for equitable, walkable, vibrant urban areas as the founder of Redwood City Forward. She supports policies that will end exclusionary zoning, mix uses across the city, and prioritize the safety and convenience of pedestrians and bicyclists, breaking our region’s reliance on automobiles. Isabella’s career as a public health advocate is likewise crucial for strong local governance during a pandemic, and electing her to the Council would make Redwood City a stronger, healthier, more resilient community.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Redwood City City Council

District 4

Michael Smith

Michael Smith is fortunate to have no competition in his District 5 race! Michael has been a champion for housing as a Planning Commissioner and we’re so excited to have him on the City Council next year.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

Redwood City City Council

District 7

Alicia Aguirre

In District 7, voters have a chance to reelect long-time housing champion Alicia Aguirre! Alicia has routinely embraced progressive housing policies, from streamlining affordable housing to renter protections, at both the local and regional level.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

San Bruno

San Bruno Mayor

Rico Medina

In San Bruno, we’re supporting Mayor Rico Medina for re-election. Rico stands up for housing. He backed the Mills Park development despite intense opposition lead by his anti-housing challenger.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

San Bruno City Council

At-large

Michael Salazar

Councilmember Michael Salazar has a record of supporting transit-oriented housing in San Bruno and is committed to finding regional solutions to our housing crisis.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

San Carlos

San Carlos City Council

At-large

JT Eden

In San Carlos, our members endorsed JT Eden! JT is a young, progressive candidate; his support of ending exclusionary zoning and protecting renters would be a deeply valuable addition to the City Council.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

San Mateo

San Mateo City Council

At-large

Amourence Lee

In San Mateo, we early-endorsed Councilmember Amourence Lee! She is a leader in the formerly-redlined North Central neighborhood, as well as being a staunch supporter of renters, affordable housing, and equity.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

β›” NO

Measure R

Measure R, a compromise measure represents an improvement from the status quo represented by Measure Y. While it would exempt height and density restrictions in certain transit-rich locations, it will preserve harmful density limits in most parts of the City. While we prefer Measure R to Measure Y, we would like to see both measures fail so that zoning can be determined by the General Plan process, not the ballot box.

Opposed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

β›” NO

Measure Y

1990 was 30 years ago. San Mateo needs more homes to catch up to job growth, and extending a 1990 downzoning for another 10 years would make it difficult to building enough housing to meet the needs of the community.

Opposed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

South San Francisco

South San Francisco City Council

District 2

Mark Nagales

Councilmember Mark Nagales has repeatedly stood up for new housing, including in the face of strong opposition, and is a strong supporter of more equitable, more efficient public transit.

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.

South San Francisco City Council

District 4

James Coleman

James Coleman is a young, progressive candidate, who understands the need to undo exclusionary zoning and protect renters from displacement. He is challenging an anti-housing incumbent who was appointed to the role 18 years ago!

Endorsed by Peninsula for EveryoneΒ and YIMBY Action.