Praising Arizona: Former Redding Resident Loves Tucson

In response to some heavy prompting by a family member in Tucson, Arizona, I left my home of 40 years (which I’ve been guilty of referring to as “redneck Redding” in my less charitable moments) with very mixed feelings, to move to the Tucson area last year.

Despite my relative’s glowing recommendations, I made this major change at 80 years old with no small measure of trepidation. I wasn’t convinced that even the most progressive city in a deep red state would be an improvement over what is arguably the most right-wing, Trump-supporting region in deep blue California.

I’m pleased to say that there is far more going on of a positive nature in my new home than I would have ever imagined.

Tucson is a beautiful, wildfire-free southern Arizona city of a half-million people in Pima County, which covers 9,000 square miles, and is larger and more populated than several small states. Tucson and Pima County are governed by a progressive city council and county board of supervisors, who are often at odds—in a knock-down, drag-out fashion—with Arizona’s heavily conservative state government, to the point that Pima County once attempted to secede from the rest of the state.

Maricopa County, where Arizona’s state capitol, Phoenix, is located, is home to the infamous Sheriff Joe Arpaio, whose anti-immigrant abuses and racial profiling lawsuits have cost the taxpayers of that county $66 million and counting. They didn’t seem to mind, though, since they reelected him to term after term spanning an incredible 24 years, until Nov. 2016, when he was finally ousted.

The Republican-controlled state capitol has also originated some of the most stunningly over-reaching state laws in the country.

For example, in 2016 the Arizona State Legislature passed SB 1487, which is a blatant attempt by the Republican majority to bring wayward liberal places like Tucson and Pima County to heel. Arizona cities and counties can no longer implement local laws and ordinances that don’t conform to state law without being deprived of large sums of shared state revenue. Liberal areas rightfully view this law as denying local jurisdictions the ability to govern in a way that addresses local concerns.

One casualty of this new law was a local ordinance implemented by the city of Tucson in an effort to reduce the number of guns floating around the streets of the city. The ordinance was implemented after two local mass shootings and permitted the city to destroy guns used to commit crimes and received in voluntary buy-backs from local residents.

However, an NRA-backed lawsuit brought by the state was decided in the state’s favor, on the grounds that destroying guns violates a state law requiring “surplus property,” including guns, to be sold to the highest bidder.

Tucson’s counter-suit maintained that the autonomy of cities and counties to address their own needs was being compromised, but was rejected by the Republican-stacked Arizona Supreme Court. Tucson city officials had no choice but to void the local law after the State of Arizona threatened them with the loss of $57 million in shared state revenue.

Both Pima County and Tucson issued formal statements labeling Trump’s plans to expand the U.S./Mexico border wall as “an offensive and damaging symbol of fear and division”. The Tucson City Council also recently approved placing a measure on the November ballot which would make Tucson Arizona’s first sanctuary city. This measure was submitted with 12,000 local signatures (3,100 more than needed). Predictably Arizona Republicans have brought a lawsuit challenging aspects of the signature-gathering process in an attempt to keep this measure from reaching the ballot.

This is in stark contrast to the rush by the Shasta County Board of Supervisors to adopt a resolution – in response to pressure from many of their constituents – to publicly declare themselves opposed to sanctuary cities, and to express their willingness to aid the Trump administration in its Draconian anti-immigration sweeps.

And where Shasta County has its Tea Party-motored State of Jefferson movement, an attempt was made a few years back led by a group of progressive attorneys to separate Pima County from the rest of the state (this proposed 51st state was tentatively called “Baja Arizona”).

This effort was inspired in part by the state-level passage of SB 1070, which prompted a national boycott of Arizona by businesses and governments in various other states. This civil rights-violating law enabled police officers to racially profile and harass any darker-skinned person they came into contact with simply under the assumption that they might be in the country illegally. It required Hispanic-appearing people singled out by police to either prove their citizenship, or to carry papers at all times proving they are documented immigrants.

Of course both efforts are doomed to failure, but they further highlight the polar opposites in attitude and actions that exist in Shasta and Pima counties, which Pima County officials struggle valiantly to maintain in the face of constant backlash from the state.

Arizona’s ultra-conservative state government still has the upper hand. However, I’m seeing definite glimmers of hope in things like the election of Democrat Kyrsten Sinema to the Arizona Senate, the recent defeat of a bill that would have defunded comprehensive women’s clinics like Planned Parenthood in favor of funneling millions of dollars into deceptive, heavily religious anti-abortion crisis pregnancy centers, and former Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s loss to a far more moderate candidate. If progressive leaders, organizations, and individual voters can successfully chip away at extremism in one of the most rabidly right-wing states in the country, perhaps there’s even hope for Shasta County.

https://news.yahoo.com/green-shirt-guy-goes-viral-222150152.html

The short viral clip above shows anti-immigrant, MAGA hat-wearing protestors at a recent Tucson City Council meeting being met with laughter, boos, and a police escort out the door.

Patrecia Barrett
Green Valley, Arizona

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77 Responses

  1. Avatar Beverly Stafford says:

    And Green Valley hasn’t been invaded by Bethel . . . yet, anyway.

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      Unfortunately we do have our problems with the religious invasion of public schools (with the State’s blessings, and aided by State laws), but there is at least a major reaction from the citizenry here that has achieved some notable success in putting a stop to that separation of church and state violation in this part of the state.

  2. Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

    I don’t know about ‘Zona, but here in Cali, counties are entities of the state, so county ordinances and such have to comply with state law by extension. But then, so must incorporated cities, which are not entities of the state. A conflict exists when local legislation duplicates, contradicts, or enters an area fully occupied by state law.

    Commander Shinsplints has of course threatened to withhold various sources of federal funding from states and cities that don’t bend to his unpredictable will.

    My most recent visit to Tucson was a drive through from Austin, TX in the aftermath of 9/11, when all the airports were closed. My wife recently spent a week in Tucson, and it moved high on her list of places to retire.

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      Steven,

      I believe that local jurisdictions in California have much greater freedom to pass local ordinances that address local needs. Arizona cities and counties are basically being punished for passing anything that doesn’t conform to the ultra-right-wing agenda of the State Legislature.

      • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

        Patricia, the Nike plant in Goodyear is a classic example of local city ignoring state, Ducey objections, in giving local tax breaks which were more than the state was offering. Phoenix cities have a lot more to offer business than Shasta County. Though in your area there is a possible environmental damage. Allowing the Santa Rita Quarry to expand in an area that is mostly dependent on ground water could have disastrous outcomes.

        • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

          Bruce,

          I was thrilled to see that the Goodyear project is actually going forward. Thank you for pointing out yet another step forward for Arizona. It’s well on its way to becoming at least a “purple” state.

          • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

            Also, the Nike plant is just another example of how an ultra-right-wing agenda can harm cities and states. The idea that five hundred jobs would have been turned away just because Nike chose to abandon plans for shoes with an American flag on them is the height of idiocy.

          • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

            Patricia, the Nike plant was always going forward, Goodyear and Nike both voiced that before the words were out of Ducey’s mouth. In fact Ducey was roundly roasted over wearing Nike shoes at a BBQ on 4th of July.
            You will find the over riding concern is water in Arizona. It tops all items in discussion. Especially where development is concerned.

          • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

            Bruce,

            I believe there was some initial doubt that the Goodyear plant would go forward when Governor Ducey first expressed his intention of pulling State financial incentives for the project. However, the City of Goodyear itself then decided to make up for that loss.

          • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

            Patricia, there was never any doubt Nike was not going in Goodyear. Ducey suggested that the state with hold $1 million in tax incentives to Nike, two liberal economists agreed with Ducey stating the state should not promote tax incentives to business because they could be politicalized. The next day after Ducey made his announcement the Goodyear City Council stated they would honor their commitment to Nike, $2 million. A Nike spokes person also stated they were committed to Goodyear. The rumor that Nike wouldn’t build there was squashed immediately but it lived on promoted by conspiracy theorists.
            My wife and I will probably be moving to Goodyear because we already are involved there. She goes to the Y there and other ladies she has met go out to luncheons and even line dancing at the local Optimum center. I volunteer twice a month at St Marys Food Bank in Avondale, part of Goodyear. Rents are very affordable and I have made a lot of friends.

    • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

      Steve, Tucson was the city where Death Wish was partly filmed. Watching that movie and seeing present day Tucson is Night and Day.

  3. Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

    Patricia, welcome to Arizona.
    You didn’t mention that Joe Arpaio has entered the race for Sheriff of Maricopa County next election. This is deemed a losing candidacy even by fellow Republicans. If the election were held in Sun City he would win hands down, but it isn’t. The present, Democrat sheriff has eliminated all the Arpaio Posses except one, Sun City Posse. This was a huge problem as Arpaio had deputized several “Sheriffs” who would pull over residents legally, the Sheriffs were mostly old White men who would pull over darker skinned drivers. The Sun City Posse, 350 strong, survived but are no more than a neighborhood watch group. While they have their own uniforms and marked vehicles they have no official control.
    Mark Kelly has entered the 2020 race against Senator McSally, a solid Trump supporter, and Kelly is already out polling her.
    Bethel will not be invading Arizona but the FLDS, of Colorado City, Bundy followers, has tried to disrupt the Budget Process.
    And here in the West Valley, where I live, Nike is still opening their plant in Goodyear that will employee 500.
    The Wall is a non starter except in places like the 1st District in northern California.
    Now I can debate Patricia over whether the East Valley or the West Valley is better.
    And there are a lot of retirees from Redding down here, mostly in the West Valley. Drawn, as was I, by family that had moved here.

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      Bruce,

      Yep – I believe there’s hope for Arizona yet. I’m impressed daily with the vast differences in attitude between the majority of citizens in Pima and Shasta Counties. However, I don’t believe those differences are nearly as pronounced in Maricopa County (where you are), although it seems to be moving in the right direction.

    • Avatar Richard Christoph says:

      “Bethel will not be invading Arizona but the FLDS, of Colorado City, Bundy followers, has tried to disrupt the Budget Process.”

      Bruce, we drove through Colorado City last week on the way back from Sedona. We had first driven through 15 years ago, shortly after I had read John Krakauer’s excellent book, “Under The Banner Of Heaven.” Terri thought that the town was even more depressing this time.

      • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

        Richard, the FLDS tried to change the Arizona Budget because of some health concern. Not sure what it was but there has been a lot of objections to religious exemptions for vaccinating . Arizona is really pushing for vaccinating all residents.

  4. Avatar Doug Cook says:

    Just what Arizona needs…a bunch of progressive Californians moving in to try and make the state as screwed up as California is

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      Doug,

      Actually, that’s EXACTLY what Arizona needs.

      • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

        And Doug – other states have never boycotted California because of racist, sexist, and/or homophobic state laws (that’s a distinction reserved solely for red states).

        Also interesting is that there are no anti-homeless laws in Tucson or Pima County that I’m aware. Of course there are very few homeless people here per capita compared to Shasta County, but then housing is cheap and plentiful, and – being a progressive area – there are more services.

        • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

          Patricia, The only area I have noticed that have anti homeless restrictions was in Prescott. But that was a result of over 200 fraudulent Sobering Centers that were mostly shut down by the state. Prescott is also where a state legislator was forced to resign for stating Arizona needed more white students. Prescott also had a state legislator that tried to force a slow truck law because he had to endure driving behind slow trucks on the hills between Prescott and Phoenix.
          Phoenix Rescue Mission, run by the same people who run Redding Rescue Mission, has partnered with the city of Glendale to employ the homeless in cleaning up public areas.

          • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

            Bruce,

            What you are talking about is a program that operates in cities all over Arizona, and is funded by local governments (the Rescue Missions just provide some transportation). There is apparently great demand to take part in this program, for which I believe participants are paid $55 a day.

            Residents of the Redding Rescue Mission are pressured to help clean up the city, as a public relations gimmick by the Mission’s administration. The only (major) difference is that they aren’t being paid.

          • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

            Patricia, I have always brought up how Phoenix Rescue Mission and Redding Rescue Mission are part of the same group but are run differently. And I am not aware of any other city than Glendale that is working with homeless shelters to employ the homeless.

      • Avatar Doug Cook says:

        Patrecia, Interesting that you are enjoying a Red state…almost half of all the homeless in the nation live in the 3 progressive states in the west, California, Oregon and Washington. California has the highest homeless population in the nation . About 22 percent of the nation’s total homeless population reside in the state You and other progressives that got fed up living in this state want to bring the homeless to your new state now. LA, SF, Portland and Seattle are turning into basically like 3rd world countries with an epidemic of infectious typhus outbreaks…something not seen since the middle ages. The sidewalks of our cities are homes to piles of used needles, feces, and refuse. Now you want to bring that to Arizona with liberal homeless laws. The homeless problem in these 3 western states has nothing to do with the Republicans…the GOP has no power in these states. It is the progressive policies of these states that have caused this problem.

        • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

          Doug, Arizona, and Wyoming, have always had liberal laws on homeless, not anti-homeless laws. It seems the areas that have the most homeless problems are areas with anti-homeless laws.

        • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

          Doug,

          There are a few things you’re overlooking.

          One is that California has the highest housing costs – and the greatest housing shortages – in the nation (which is true to a lesser extent of the entire West Coast). On the other hand, housing is comparatively cheap and plentiful here.

          Redding’s rental vacancy rate was less than 2 percent even before last year’s devastating fires, and of course most of the minimal amount of housing there is has been monopolized by the thousands of Bethel adherents who have flooded the area in recent years.

          Lack of affordable housing has been cited by both local and national experts as a primary contributor to homelessness. It’s no coincidence that the local homeless population skyrocketed by four hundred percent following the City of Redding’s gentrification binge in the last decade, in which a considerable amount of lower-end housing was destroyed to increase the local tax base.

          And it was not “liberal” policies that caused a long series of NIMBYist local officials to fight tooth-and-nail to keep low-income housing and more adequate facilities for the homeless out of the area, when those opportunities presented themselves.

        • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

          Doug — California’s homelessness problem is vexing, given that it’s a product of our prosperity….something that most blue states don’t have to struggle with. What would you have us do? California’s traditional answer is to tax the rich and redistribute wealth. You’re against that, right?

          Another issue is Airbnb and such. Rich investors have bought up a lot of housing and converted it to temporary visitor rental property—it’s a problem not just in the Bay Area, but here in Redding. Should we outlaw that practice? Oh wait…you’re against that kind of government regulation.

          Get rid of planning and zoning laws? Even conservatives are NIMBYs, and won’t have it.

          Another contributing factor is corporate greed and malfeasance. The opioid epidemic is horrible across America, but junkies can keep it together enough to stay housed in tarpaper shacks or single-wide trailers in most blue states. Not so on the prosperous and liberal coasts.

          You bitch plenty about California, but I’ve never seen you offer up a solution. I can only assume you’d trade our state’s prosperity and wealth for

          • Avatar Doug Cook says:

            Yes, I am against increasing taxes…which California politicians are addicted to. Zoning laws? Let’s look what California has done this year. Starting in 2020, solar energy will be mandatory in the state for all nrew housing developments. Will that increase housing or make it affordable? No. State wide rent control is working its way through the legislature. Anybody that has taken Econ 101 in high school or college knows what that will do to the housing market. it will reduce rentals and affordable housing.
            These cities I mentioned above spend upwards to a billion dollars a year on the homeless, but the population keeps growing. Why? Because they allow sleeping and defecating on the streets…they allow camping on the sidewalk, open use of drugs. Maybe Tuscon doesn’t have a homeless problem because they don’t allow abhorrent behavior on their city streets, maybe they don’t allow bums to sleep in the doorways of businesses.
            My point is that these progressive individuals are fleeing the mess that is California, but when they get to their new state…they want to implement policies and laws that got California screwed up to begin with.

          • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

            Doug,

            As I’ve already said, Tucson and Pima County have no anti-homeless laws that I’m aware of.

            And unlike Redding and California in general, housing here is cheap and plentiful (as a rule wages actually support the cost of housing), which makes all the difference.

            Tucson and Pima County are PROGRESSIVE areas, which means their local governing bodies understand that criminalizing homelessness does nothing to alleviate it – it just gives homeless people a criminal record that makes securing jobs and housing in the future that much harder.

          • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

            And BTW Doug – As a rabid defender of the Bethel invasion, you have no business complaining about local homelessness.

            Bethel adherents have monopolized most of the area’s existing housing (especially on the less expensive end), while Bethel has made no effort at all to provide housing for its thousands of followers flooding the area – even as part of its upcoming $148 Million 39-acre mega-church campus.

            And please don’t bother to compare Bethel to state universities (again). In cities where state universities are located, students who don’t live on campus in student housing can live in off-campus housing specifically built for students (shared rooms, communal kitchens, etc.). Of course developers aren’t exactly rushing to build housing for Bethel’s supernatural cult school and other of its scams that attract gullible people to Redding. It’s a given that state universities will be here far into the future. The same can’t be said for the Bethel scam.

          • Avatar Doug Cook says:

            Patrecia…Whenever you bring up the homeless problem, you only focus on Redding and blame Bethel. California holds a quarter of all homeless people in the nation. It is not just Redding suffering from a homeless problem. It is the entire west coast. Bethel is not in Portland, LA or Seattle..where in just a couple years, the homeless population has grown by double digits.

          • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

            Doug,

            Redding used to be one of the most affordable places to live in California. However, between gentrification, NIMBYist local official’s complete unwillingness to allow low-income housing into the area (unless forced to by the state), and the Bethel invasion, it’s no longer all that affordable.

            Redding would have recovered from the effects of gentrification to a much greater extent if not for cult followers taking up nearly every available rental (and driving up housing costs in general in the process).

    • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

      Doug, the head of the Arizona Republican Committee is Kelly Ward who believes in chemtrails and that the Earth is 6,000 years old. Fortunately the largest bloc of voters in Arizona are Independents.
      Progressive, not regressive, is what Arizona needs.

      • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

        Bruce,

        “Independents” are usually just disillusioned Republicans – but not disillusioned enough to become Democrats. Most would identify as “libertarians”, which is just a Republican on steroids.

        • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

          Patricia, Independents are not Republicans on steroids, they are voters disillusioned with both parties. Senator Sinema and Mark Kelly both have leaned away from DNC party so much they are called DINOs. I read Sinema’s Facebook page and there are many Republicans that are very happy with her.

      • Avatar Doug Cook says:

        Bruce says…”the head of the Arizona Republican Committee is Kelly Ward who believes in chemtrails”. I looked into this allegation and what you say is not true. What Ms Ward did was to have “invited constituents of her state Senate district to a small, informational seminar on chemtrails by two Arizona Department of Environmental Quality staffers in Kingman, Ariz. Some audience members then provided testimony and asked questions of the staffers and Ward.

        “The town hall was conducted in response to constituent concerns, and experts were brought in to directly refute those concerns,” Ward’s spokeswoman Jennifer Lawrence said.”
        So you misrepresent what Ms Ward did. The Shasta County Supervisors did something similar. They took up the subject of chemtrails after constituents demanded they address the subject. Do all the Shasta County sups believe in chemtrails?
        https://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2017/aug/25/senate-leadership-fund/no-kelli-ward-isnt-chemtrails-conspiracy-theorist/

  5. Barbara Rice Barbara Rice says:

    Guys…. don’t make me stop this car.

    • Avatar Linda Cooper says:

      I’m taking a risk here. And I can only begin to imagine the difficult role of a moderator. However, with the exception of one (inflamatory) opinion, not comment, I’m not seeing a reason for stopping the car. I’m learning so much about Arizona, as I too wonder about locating to different areas. For some reason, that may be way off-base, I want to share what I read from another site today:
      The context was a discussion on the name calling by a sitting president, and do “we” just sit and take it. Because there are still a lot of civilized folks out there who want to be polite.

      “At some point, it’s time to fight fire with fire, and in this case, it is well-deserved.”

      I seriously don’t want to get involved in this, and yet I am if I continue to log on. Simply put, it just seems that most folks were being informative and easy. So, why does the car have to stop because of one person?

      Anyway.

      • Barbara Rice Barbara Rice says:

        I took down a comment within a couple of minutes of its posting, which you probably didn’t have a chance to see. My remark was directed at the person(s) involved, who are well aware of ANC’s policy about ad hominem attacks.

      • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

        Linda,

        I was wondering about that myself. I personally don’t see anything objectionable, but then I have a pretty low bar.

        • Avatar Linda Cooper says:

          Hello, Patrecia. Well, now we have an answer. And I’m loving that you are loving Arizona! I really appreciated reading about your new move. Brava!

          • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

            Thank you Linda. It’s so laid-back here, and living is cheap. I’m renting a lovely “courtyard” apartment (so named because each apartment has its own little walled courtyard) for $500 a month, utilities paid. This probably isn’t the best place for people who are still working, but the area has fabulous services for seniors.

        • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

          Barbara,

          I didn’t see your comment before posting mine above (I guess because of the delay in comments appearing).

  6. Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

    There is no comparison possible between Redding and Arizona. Arizona may have some ultra right Republicans, Kelli Ward is a classic example, but there is no church cult trying to take over the state.

  7. Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

    Bruce,

    Bethel is part of an international Dominionist movement comprised of millions of followers and thousands of churches world-wide. It is basically overseen by the so-called “New Apostolic Reformation”, in which Bethel’s Bill Johnson and Kris Vallotton hold key leadership positions.

    In addition, Dominionists of the Bethel variety have been placed in charge of many (if not most) federal agencies and commissions, and people with direct connections to Bethel leaders (co-authors, close associates, fellow NAR “prophets”, etc.) are part of Trump’s inner circle of Dominionist “advisors”.

    These people are already dominating America’s federal government (and many state governments). How much more proof does anyone need?

  8. Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

    Well, if you ever decide you’re interested in the facts on this issue, there is a wealth of proof available. In fact, some of it can even be found in R.V. Scheide’s excellent Bethel series, right here on ANC.

    • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

      Patricia, I have read your links and RV’s column. The “facts” regarding Bethel’s world domination are your opinion and not facts.
      We were having a nice conversation about Arizona and you had to insert Bethel which has zero presence in Arizona.

        • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

          Thanks Chris.

          And yes – Bethel churches, Bethel schools, and Bethel affiliates are now unfortunately nearly everywhere in the country, and in the world.

        • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

          I do not worry about Bethel taking over Arizona, in fact the immigrants merging into the state are majority Catholic and not likely to join Bethel.
          Arizona has real problems of the #1 and #2 priorities are water and homelessness. Education, climate change increasing population are also concerns. Bethel or any other church, is not mentioned.
          I’ll leave the world domination to others who seem to have a lot of idle time.

      • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

        Bruce,

        Actually I wasn’t the person who first mentioned Bethel on this thread (I believe it was brought up in connection with California’s – and Redding’s – extreme shortage of housing, which doesn’t really exist in many parts of Arizona).

        And 7 Mountains Dominionism (a subject Bethel leaders have written books about) is very much a reality, which we can clearly see at work on a massive scale in both our current federal government and in many states. It’s hardly my imagination. Bethel leaders admit to plans that will make Redding a world-wide example of how to turn an entire city into their version of theocracy.

  9. Avatar Tim says:

    Steve says: “Another issue is Airbnb and such. Rich investors have bought up a lot of housing and converted it to temporary visitor rental property—it’s a problem not just in the Bay Area, but here in Redding. Should we outlaw that practice?”

    Funny, I’ve actually been looking to convert some of my rentals to Airbnb and have been talking to many of the local operators. I’m not rich and neither are they. If we were, we wouldn’t be trying to scratch and claw our way to profitably by doing a lot of extra work going from 5% annual turnover to 12,000% turnover and from 40% of revenue going to taxes & fees to 60% of revenue going to taxes & fees. I’ll need a place to be booked 10 days out of the month just to cover my expenses and it is risky to count on more.

    Why am I looking at doing all this extra work and take extra risks? Because California Democrats are in the process of implementing statewide rent control despite the majority of voters rejecting the issue in the last general election.

    Contrary to popular belief, the median rent in Redding has not kept up with inflation. According to census data, it has gone from $884 in 2006 to $990 in 2017 (and is around $1050 today). According to the under-reporting CPI, $884 in 2006 dollars would be worth $1125 today. Meanwhile my insurance has doubled, property taxes continue to rise 2% + new bond measures, labor has nearly doubled, etc.

    Do you rent your home? Do you want to control rising rent? Well there happens to be a way to do that — it is called a lease! Want to stay here the next 5 or 10 years and know how much you’ll pay each month? Sign a 5 or 10 year lease that protects both of us! Rent control gives those benefits to the renter and none to the landlord which means we’re less likely to continue offering those services…

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      Tim,

      Rental property owners in California have been rent gouging like crazy for decades, so if this bill becomes law they can “only” raise rents 7 percent a year. However, anything built within the past ten years is exempt.

      It also has a “just cause” clause, which I believe is the law here in Arizona. Instead of being allowed to just hand existing tenants a 30-day notice to vacate with no reason given , tenants can only be evicted if there is a legitimate problem (failure to pay rent, creating a nuisance, criminal activity, etc.).

      Can you imagine what a dent that would put in the activities of all the sleazy property owners who evict local families and individuals just so they can pack crowds of Bethel’s supernatural students into their rentals for more than most local families can afford to pay?

      As to turning your rentals into AIRBNB’s – there is only so much demand for high-priced temporary housing (even with all the Bethel devotees coming into the area to be taken advantage of by Bethel’s various scams). If enough people did what you are considering, there would eventually be a lot of rentals just sitting empty.

      • Avatar Tim says:

        The just cause law is also terrible. Again, if you want to stay longer sign a longer lease. It is my property, why do you assume the right to stay there indefinitely if I decide to rent it to you for 1 month? When the term is up, why can’t I ask you to go your separate way?

        And if CA landlords were able to price gouge, we’d be building more homes left and right to price gouge more and more people. CA makes it very very expensive to build new homes, which means existing homes sell for higher prices which means rents need to be higher to cover the cost of buying the homes.

        Now California is not only making it harder to build new housing, these anti-private property laws are making new investments less attractive. Landlords are better off investing in hassle free stocks or bonds — securities other people do not feel entitled to take from you because they believe they have a right to it.

      • Avatar Tim says:

        PS: That “only 7%” includes inflation now (Newsom originally greed to 10% with inflation). My insurance company is not limited to 7% price hikes. My PG&E rates aren’t. My contractor isn’t.

        Owning a rental used to be a pretty low risk, low yield long term retirement investment. Now it is higher risk for even lower yield. The predictable result is less investment in new rentals which means we’re going to start seeing more government housing projects that reward only well-connected developers (like our ex-mayor, Weaver) and that turn into slums 5-10 years after being built.

        • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

          Tim,

          Homes built in the past ten years are exempt from the prospective rent control bill, so this particular law wouldn’t affect new rentals.

          Also, leases aren’t available for all (or even most) rentals. Landlords typically want to leave their options open so they can evict existing tenants at the drop of a hat if a more lucrative prospect comes along.

          And your comment about subsidized housing turning into a slum in 5 to 10 years is an outdated stereotype. Housing of that type is now often better maintained and regulated (and its residents are more thoroughly vetted) than the private, middle class housing that surrounds it.

          It hasn’t been unusual for rental property owners in many parts of California to raise rents a thousand percent just over the course of a few years. These extortionists have made out like the bandits they are, and it’s long past time to slow that gravy train down.

  10. Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

    In Phoenix, the whole valley, the list for affordable housing, HUD or other programs, is over 5,000. AZ Republic did a series on affordable housing. The reason is that the economy has boomed in Phoenix, unlike Redding, and many landlords no longer rent to HUD because there are a lot of employed people that can afford housing. In addition they are tearing down apartments and closing trailer parks for investors to build expensive housing. I say expensive because those investor housing are geared toward high income people.
    Phoenix News-Time did an article on AirBubs in Sedona, not exactly an affordable housing area. Many investors have bought up housing and are turning them into very profitable AirBubs. This has decreased rental choices and made rents higher.
    After a series of AirBub parties in Phoenix that got out of hand the state has tightened restrictions on AirBubs. There have been instances were AirBubs were rented to large groups where the parties got out of hand and there were rapes and assaults.

    • Avatar Candace C says:

      Lack of affordable housing is definitely a problem in Shasta County and elsewhere. That said, many AirB&B hosts are simply hard working people trying to supplement their income. Their homes are often times smaller, older homes with a single room to rent.

  11. Hal Johnson Hal Johnson says:

    I enjoyed your post, Patrecia.

    I’ve long been taken with the Tucson area, even with my limited exposure to it. I’ve ferried helicopters several times over the years between California and Louisiana, and I love the stark beauty of Tucson and surrounding areas. I always made the town my stop for the night, and I always dined at the Javelina Cantina, which had merely okay food (and bad Yelp ratings today), but they had incredible sweet marinated jalapenos that I dream about to this day. :::heavy sigh:::

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      Thank you Hal.

      I spent several summers here with family members as a kid, and loved every minute of it. Of course it’s grown quite a bit, but not in a bad way. Tucson is more like a collection of smaller cities (with very few high-rise buildings, which I hate), and has beautiful historical architecture and a fascinating history.

      Of course you have to love lizards – we have hundreds of small lizards running all over the place during the summer months. I think they’re comical, but I suspect not everyone shares my opinion.

  12. Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

    More from the right-wing “Christian” political contingent in Arizona. This state senator wants mandatory (government-forced) church attendance:

    http://www.hideoutnow.com/2019/07/arizona-state-senator-who-believes.html

    • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

      Patricia, there is more to this story that you are not aware of. A male state legislator from Prescott a year ago voiced that there needs to be “more white babies”. He was censored and eventually forced to resign by the GOP. Now Allen, a female, makes the statement you pointed out and the GOP is defending her. Welcome to Arizona politics.

  13. Avatar Dan Shearer says:

    Welcome to Green Valley, Patrecia (we’re a way different animal than Tucson). So quickly you have sized us up! Some of your observations are spot on, some are exaggerated, others barely scratch the surface of what’s really going on (time will shape your thoughts, I assure you). In any event, we’re glad you’re here and contributing. Now, please do share your valuable insights with your new home — we look forward to hearing from you. Dan Shearer, editor/Green Valley News & Sahuarita Sun; dshearer@gvnews.com

    • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

      Dan, like Patricia I am a 40 year Redding resident who ended up in Arizona, though I took a longer route through Wyoming first. Patricia is a Redding Liberal and I am a Redding Conservative. We do clash on a few items mostly dealing with Bethel Supernatural Church. I see them as a small cult that is taking over Redding while she sees them as part of a world dominance mega church. Anytime you question her, like the “exaggeration” suggestion, you can expect a quick response. But those responses can be interesting. You should ask her for an article for GV News, In fact I have written articles that were published on Anews and if you are receptive I will submit a LTTE.

      • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

        Bruce,

        You’ve been presented with plenty of evidence that Bethel is a leading force in the international Dominionist movement, which has millions of followers, thousands of churches, and vast wealth at its disposal, and that close associates and co-authors of Bethel leaders are now part of Trump’s inner circle of Dominionist “advisors.

        Despite all that you continue to make the bizarre claim that anything that isn’t the Catholic or Mormon church is just a small local cult, which is far from true in Bethel’s case.

  14. Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

    Mr. Shearer – Thank you for the welcome. And “exaggerated” how so?

  15. Avatar Doug Cook says:

    Speaking of AirBnBs. Every year in March I venture down to So Cal to watch a NASCAR car race. The frustrating part is that the local hotels around Ontario Ca jack up the prices for that weekend. Last year I spent over $200 a night for a La Quinta room. This year I looked into AirBnBs and found a lovely 1 bedroom cottage for $60/night. I couldn’t be happier.

  16. Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

    Doug,

    The problem is that most Airbnbs would otherwise be regular monthly rentals, which further contributes to the shortage of housing, and drives up the cost of whatever housing remains. Of course in Redding most of the Airbnb clientele are Bethel marks, who come here for Bethel’s healing and other scams.

    It’s apparently not enough that Bethel’s supernatural students have monopolized the area’s affordable housing – it looks as though its scam victims are going to take up the rest, enabled by greedy landlords, and people who won’t use actual motels/hotels, at the expense of the average working family, the poor, and the homeless.

  17. Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

    Good news for California renters. Landlords can now only evict tenants for “cause” (failure to pay rent, criminal activity, etc.). They can no longer just hand existing tenants a 30-day notice with no reason given. This should put a halt to all the greedy local landlords who throw out their existing tenants so they can rent to crowds of Bethel students.

    They can now also only raise the rents 5 percent a year, after inflation.

    https://www.businessinsider.com/california-pass-rent-control-bill-to-address-affordable-housing-crisis-2019-9?fbclid=IwAR1thdLW0FtkhTYH8wY8oNU6nFejt5xa9Q0RRL00xcyWEXnHkffJNNnhmQw

    • Avatar Doug Cook says:

      …and all that will do is keep developers from building and cause even more 0f a housing shortge in the state. You never seem to look at cause and effect.

      • Avatar Bruce Vojtecky says:

        Doug and Patricia, I was a victim of landlords evicting tenants for no reason in Concord in the late 70s. The apartment complex we lived in, mixed white, Hispanic, black, was bought by an investment group. They evicted every single resident with no reason. Then they raised the rents by a third and brought in subsidized Vietnam refugees. My tax money paid for those who replaced me. Plus finding another rental in Concord was extremely difficult. I can only imagine the problem has gotten worse.

        • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

          By numerous accounts I’ve heard it happens in Redding all the time. Local families and individuals are given a 30-day notice to vacate, to be replaced by crowds of Bethel students who are packed in (I’ve heard of as many as 13 supernatural students in a single rental) for $400 per person and up.

          I only wish this new law had also limited the number of Airbnbs in a given area. Of course supply and demand will address that to some extent. Even in Redding (which has a steady stream of cult followers who ebb in and out for Bethel’s “healing ministry” and other scams) there is only going to be so much demand for expensive short-term rentals, should property owners decide to turn all their rentals into Airbnbs to avoid the restrictions of this new law.

      • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

        Doug,

        There actually wasn’t much construction of new rentals going on in California even prior to this law, with any new lower-end housing being financed exclusively through government and private agency grants.

        And now Trump and his cohorts are hacking away at what federal money is available, which will force millions more families and individuals into the streets.

  18. Avatar Russell K. Hunt says:

    Oh course you know the numerous Bethel sub ministries, rent houses and stuff 4 kids in a room for $600 a month with all the free bananas you can eat. They are not Bethel Corporations. But the COR only allows 2 unrelated adults to share a room as tenants.

    • Avatar Beverly Stafford says:

      Good luck enforcing that. Our subdivision is supposed to be owner-occupied only. We even received a letter from COR restating that mabdate a few years ago. But numerous of the houses are rentals. We received two letters in that past few months advising that the owners of two houses wanted to turn their homes into some sort of commercial enterprise. I’m guessing that meant an airbnb, but my fear is that they will become Bethel rentals and already limited parking will be nonexistent parking.