“California is in the clutches of a housing crisis, one that is making it more difficult for middle-class families to find a safe, affordable place to live. Unfortunately, Proposition 10 — the ballot measure that repeals the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act, including protections for tenants and single-family homeowners — could make the housing crisis worse, creating more pressure on the San Diego housing market and contributing to our region’s growing homeless problem.

Of course, in San Diego, any significant public policy decision involving housing disproportionately impacts veterans. Military veterans make up more than 13 percent of the population of San Diego County, and vets play an integral role in our community.

Despite the sacrifices our veterans make for our communities and nation, many struggle to get on their feet and build a life for themselves in the civilian world. That’s why the American Legion is focused on housing affordability as a critical public policy issue. It is one that directly impacts our members; more than one-third of all vets pay too much for their housing, and 67 percent of homeless veterans in California are living unsheltered — also the highest numbers in the nation.

Other veterans groups including the state chapters of Veterans of Foreign Wars, AMVETS and the American GI Forum have joined us in opposing Proposition 10, citing concerns about how the initiative would hurt existing homeowners, and those who are struggling to find affordable housing — including many men and women who have served in the armed forces.

Unfortunately, that situation could get worse if voters approve Proposition 10. Proposition 10 does nothing to help our most vulnerable populations because it fails to target those most in need. By making it more difficult to build new affordable housing, the measure could inadvertently make the existing housing crisis even more extreme, adding to the problem the measure’s proponents say they are trying to fix.”

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