Bypassing Bylaws in Golden Hill

I've been a GH resident for almost as long as I've been a US citizen. Democracy was new to me so I have to say the elections taught me almost everything I know about politics. I'd like to provide the perspective of someone who doesn't know a lot of politics and just want a good life here in GH. In my eyes MAD was probably one of the best things happened to GH. This is a neighborhood with such charm and character but largely neglected. I agree that the City should have paid (using our tax money) to maintain this area better, but for anyone who's been here for more than a year you know that's not happening. This is not new; it didn't happen in the past several decades either. GH was not unique in this. What's unique about GH is there're residents and property owners now who want to make this area much better. Whether you consider the vote on MAD legal or not, for people who cared enough to voice their opinions, most of them said yes to MAD. Other than the first half year of MAD, I've seen a lot of changes there in GH that are positive. The streets are cleaner now. Graffiti is removed really quickly. Street trash bins are well maintained...... Why can't we just forget about whether the City should have paid for all these or not, and simply ask ourselves: Do I think all these improvements worth the assessment fee I pay each year? It's absolutely worth it to me! On the other hand, since GH is a really old neighborhood, I'm not sure if anyone has looked into how much tax the city has been collecting from GH compared to other suburban neighborhoods. I know when we bought our house, the previous owner was paying less than $600 of property tax a year! I wonder how much the City could have done with that much money in their pocket. I know that was probably pretty unique but older neighborhoods most likely don't generate as much revenue. It depends on the residents --- people like us who live and breathe here --- to keep the neighborhood up. I was really surprised to hear MAD ended up having a surplus in the past two years, which means all the improvements that I was excited to see actually cost less than what I paid for. I hope MAD could do more next year and many years to come.
— September 22, 2009 6:26 a.m.

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