tv Government Access Programming SFGTV August 1, 2019 4:00am-5:01am PDT
i would like to add these into the record, they are not in my brief. knowing this, verizon failed to alert planning. december 13, 2017 letter, planning, back in 2017 when it was 42. asked verizon for a facility that does not degrade the ascetic attributes. verizon misrepresented this facility would not detract from views on belvidere street. it would only be visible for a few feet, the pole is a visible for 180 feet along belvidere. finally, verizon interferes with this appeal process for requesting a postponement to be fast-track. >> i'm sorry, your time is up. >> we will now hear from frances dependahl. >> good evening.
i have a lot of things for the overhead projector so you can just turn it on, if you will. first of all, i wanted to comment likely about choosing another site which i had put in my initial brief. i had proposed an alternative site such as parnassus avenue. counsel for the permit holder indicated the cbr group on behalf of verizon analyzed all of the poles in the area @ on parnassus. according to the analysis, none of the polls on parnassus avenue between cole and clayton street would work due to bank requirements. except for one. the last pole was excluded because it would require substantial tree trimming in order to be feasible. i am happy to report, to the board, that the department of public works trimmed the trees on belvidere street, parnassus avenue, grattan street that week of june 12.
they also noted, by the council for the permit holder without locating on this a block of parnassus avenue would put the facility to close to other facilities that would not serve the desired area. i respectfully submit to the board that the parnassus pole is only one block northeast of grattan street and is approximately 2.5 blocks to the next facility on parnassus between schrader and a standing streets. the pole at grattan street is a comparable distance, and approximately three blocks to the facility. quality of reit views, urban design plan. the proposed facility is to be located in the public right-of-way in a residential zoning protector, planning protected location of the cole valley historical district adjacent to grattan street with average street views as shown in
the quality of street views map. this is grattan street, and this is the pole. as you can see there are 30-foot buildings, three floor, 30-foot buildings and grattan street, 2 grattan street is a three-story building. here is another view of the same thing. this is 2 grattan street, it is three stories, approximately 30 feet. the pole is approximately 30 feet, 8 inches i believe. this is belvidere street at the far right end. this is the quality of street views map. that was created in 1969, and it shows in the area we are talking about that belvidere street and grattan's reits are partially coded as average in them belvidere street is even off the map, meaning that someone coded as below average.
this is grattan street. i am standing in the middle of grattan street and i'm looking southeast and that is parnassus height. >> your time is up. >> thank you. >> any public comment on this item. please approach the microphone for public comment. >> good evening, and welcome, sir. >> thank you. that's really nice. nobody has ever said welcome to me before. how we started the time yet? >> not yet. are you ready? >> i am ready. at the last meeting, i am the neighbor who started all of the wires underground, the old-fashioned streetlights, i forgot to mention one thing that every homeowner had to pay $900 to bring the wires from underground into the house to get i had asked them to give me
an idea of what the new poll would look like, i never did e-mail it. i had somebody, this is what it looks like, they've done a sketch and shows what it really is going to look like, here's another one showing the height. i am a neighbor. our neighborhood has done everything to improve the street. one thing we have done, halloween about 42 years ago we closed the street off with our garbage can, i'm sorry the city did not approve of it, so the kids will not get hurt. then we went and got city permits, so nobody can drive down belvidere street and we get over 4,000 parents and children every year coming down belvidere street. i'm here not to be the technical
person, but to be the person that said this is our neighborhood. most people in the street that have lived there 40 years, some 55 years. we like our street, we don't think they are doing the right job for our street, and taking it from a pretty street what we have done, into a street that is becoming more and more cluttered this would not be the first thing. this -- there will be other things that come up. i appreciate your time. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> next speaker, please. >> welcome. >> before i get to my prepared remarks i want to point out that i think we heard something very revealing here from the
applicant for this. they could have muller infrastructure on every poll if they wanted to, it is a factor of money for get they have the capability. article 25 does not say they are allowed to do it the cheapest way possible. i urge you to keep that in mind for every other hearing you have if they can go the extra mile here, they can go the extra mile for every other pole in the city. president. >> two, i am concerned you showed so much concerned whether we are going to affect a hardship on the applicant's making them resubmit the permits. this thing has been flawed as one of the appeal it said. i want you to keep that in mind. the ends -- inconsistent determination, to approving the same 40-foot facility at 2 grattan does not have a rational basis. the march of 13 determination stated a 40-foot wireless facility "adds unnecessary height, is not minimally visible
and does not preserve the existing pedestrian oriented building frontage is. the inescapable issue is the negative i impact of a 40-foot pole antenna next to adjacent houses that are 30 feet high. regardless of what he wants you to believe about the height units, the house the basic premise is that 30 feet is the height of the neighborhood homes and it would be exceeded by a structure that would significantly degrade the character of the cole valley historic district. a 40-foot pole would clutter of verizon's proposed robust and ie word on the june 12 hearing, adjacent to the 35 homes would be a giant and sore thumb. 39 feet will also be a sore thumb and it remains to be seen what they are proposing rethinking thinking of proposing will really change any of that. the pedestrian experience would no longer be a view of victorian homes and a blue sky, it would be overwhelmed by towering uncluttering wireless infrastructure.
the fundamental aesthetic degradation arising from the high differential between the homes in the facility is confirmed by the internal documents and its correspondence with verizon that we recently obtained in a public records rick asked under the sunshine ordinance. the first one right here. plannings 12-13 letter to cbr's as the planning within the cole valley historic district seems to exceed the height of surrounding buildings and structure. verizon was asked to explore options to reduce the pole height, remove the pole and they were unable to do that. plannings letter to cbr reiterated that the additional height for the antenna attachment on the existing pole was incompatible with the height of the surrounding buildings. 40 feet, 39 feet, they are both incompatible. thank you. >> next speaker, please.
>> good evening. >> hello. my name is laura, i live at 477 belvidere street. i am going to continue the same argument that my friend and neighbor has just continued. the plannings memo dated 3-5-18 that backed up to approval, that the new total height of 40 feet for the proposed whole still exceeds the height of the surrounding structures building in the area. exhibit b, which you can see right here. this antenna was initially rejected because the height exceed that of the surrounding buildings which were approximately 30 feet high. significantly detracting from the historic neighborhood. verizon's and proper characterization as an average neighborhood, and verizon's irrelevant argument that zoning would permit a 40-foot building,
are both misleading distortions that fail to support the approval of verizon's permit. verizon creatively, disingenuously, and falsely evoked a hypothetical decision of the neighborhood with 40-foot buildings. 2 grattan is part of the cole valley historic district which is characterized by 30-foot buildings on subject @ to the height and more restrictive planning compatibility of standards. it is here that verizon's proposed 40-foot antenna would significantly degrade the neighborhoods and districts as static attributes. our comments here are summarized in the supplemental brief. we have 12 copies and i respectfully request the board of appeals have the supplemental brief and added to the record. i would like to make additional comments, as a resident of belvidere street on cole valley. as many of you probably know, cole valley is a beautiful neighborhood that many people select to live in due to its physical attractiveness.
it is small and quaint, when i was looking to purchase a home for my family, my two small children ages seven and nine, i wanted to say they -- stay in the city and support the city and live in a bit of. i dreamed of living on belvidere street. i found a home there. part of the charm of our neighborhood is that our homes are 2-3 feet -- three stories high and that is 30 feet or less. it doesn't feel immensely urban, while still supporting being in the city. it was disconcerting to hear that the planning department did not take into account the cole valley historic district status of our neighborhood. when evaluating the application from verizon. a 40-foot pole would significantly detract from our physical beauty. given that the pole would detract from the beauty, and the fact that the potential -- [inaudible] have not been fully evaluated of this technology in general. i request this location does not even be considered for a
possibility for this technology. thank you. >> any other public comment on this item? okay. commissioners, this matter is submitted. >> anybody want to start? >> i have a question for planning. i am sorry, scott. so -- the concern i have. evidently the permit process is flawed here. the concern going forward, since this is not the last case that we will hear on this is that the permit holder mentioned that there is no matrix, or specifics in regards to some of the language that is being used in issuing the permit. i mean, how are we to define this if there is no matrix? >> you know, one of the issues that this ward has struggled with that our department has
struggled with in reviewing this is the standard that we apply. it is a discussion that we have here. there are no clear objective standard in the current controls. there is a proposal to clear objective standard that would make everyone's review a lot easier of these applications. in terms of what would be allowed and what would not be allowed. we fully support and we have been working with public works on making such revisions to the public works code to review these applications. in terms of this particular application. it is fraud, because the decision is not reference, accurately referencing the site. it only state that this is a protective location. it was not analyzed and the decision letter with assigning protective location. for that reason, i think the approval does not properly executed, therefore you could denied on those grounds.
this would need to be done at a separate hearing on the board has at times, held a separate hearing to adopt specific findings related to denial. the board has also denied applications at a hearing without adopting separate findings onto later date. i would defer to your staff on that. >> i just want clarification. what you are saying is, and i think you stated it that this permit was issued improperly by your department? fundamentally if the permit was improperly issued and the decision-making process was flawed that led to its issuance, that is grounds, correct? i would say so. the board has --
>> i'm not trying to throw the department under the bus or this is a comp located situation. we continually have cases weekly , and you know to the audience that is here, everyone's neighborhood is special. the prices of homes in san francisco i don't think there's an average home in our seven by 6.8 here. going forward the concern would be, is, how do we put this in order and not to conflict with article 25. that comment to me is the concern. to the people that are here, we struggle with this every week. that is our president asking for the department to give us a report. unfortunately, we are subject to federal law and state law. this is more of a legislative issue than anything else. we are trying to conform with. my question is, if there is no quantifying specifics how do we determine what is what.
>> we ask the applicant provide the smallest site possible. the least obtrusive site possible. in this case, we have been told as a last week, that there is an alternative that would -- i would note that it is not a requirement. >> san francisco is one of the strictest throughout the nation. it could be more than 30 feet, and less than 30 feet could be an appropriate design in that range. i don't want people to think that it needs to be, there have been other determinations that have been appeal before this board that have antennas that are higher than the building
that it is in front of. there is an event -- availability, that is what we would ask them to do in this case. the error with this permit is that it was not properly reviewed and our decision to not reference the fact that it is in a planning protective location. >> i appreciate what staff does on a regular basis trying to comply with the many forces impacting them. thank you. >> i have one question. the effort by the department of public works, is that correct? is our timeline? what is the priority of that type of process. >> i believe legislation has been introduced already.
>> good afternoon. public works. regarding the timeline for the objective standard, we are still in the middle of deciding what is appropriate depending on planning, rpd, at all agree on. it is still pending. we don't have a timeline for it, to give you a rough estimate, could be a couple of month. >> is it at the staff level review of creating standards and introduce the legislation? >> correct. >> okay. thank you. >> there is an ordinance pending at the board. it amends article 25. it would create, put a duty on the department to create these objective standard in partnership with the planning department should be adopted at a later date. the code amendments are depending on the board.
>> the department of public works introduced it. >> there would be the ordinance, and some work to do to follow up and come back later with initial changes as well. >> i'm not fully aware, just processing it, it's a little bit over my head. >> know worries. thank you. >> do you have any further questions for public works? >> i think we are fine. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> it is rare, it has been my experience that it is rare for planning to come and say, we screwed up your big time. generally we are on the attack and trying to suggest that maybe
they should reevaluate their position. it's more rare planning comes to us and says we blew this one. i listen to that clearly. the other thing that influences my thinking here is that verizon has suggested that they have an alternative that is less intrusive, and, they are seeking a postponement of our action today so they can kick the can down the road a little bit and get that technology in place of her presentation in november. and, for thing that set me off just a wee bit, is that when mrt
want one of our competitors to take over that pole. i don't think we are in the business of protecting anybody from protecting their market share. i think we are in the business of making sure that a permit was utterly issued and clearly planning is a saying no, we did not issue this permit properly. my point before is that even if we went along with mr. albritton, and we waited until november, or we did not go along with him and suggesting to eight until november -- -- to wait until november. the permit holder is not in any different situation than they would be, one way or the other.
i kind of think that we should find for the appellant to. clean this mess. let planning evaluate application for the next permit properly and see what happens. that is kind of where i am out. >> i agree. >> i fine either way. >> can we make a motion? >> that is your call. >> motion to uphold the appeal. deny the permit on the basis that the permit was improperly issued -- >> it was improperly reviewed by the planning department so therefore is improperly issued. [inaudible] >> might i also suggest that the board find, in addition to, i
normally suggest in these situations that we would have the board not adopt the but i think we can do it today if. the permit denied on the basis that planning failed to do the proper analysis of whether this particular facility meets the compatibility center. additionally that the board find that it does not meet that standard because the proposal create a visual impact that does not comply with the standard and because the poll is too high. that was one of the big things of the planning committee. >> that would work for me and i accept your suggestion. >> i would caution, at least planning emphasized that there are other things overall that are distracting. i think they need leeway in the review to look at the overall package not just the heights.
>> right. i think the department said the lower facility was too large, as well, right? for that reason it would not meet the standard in your opinion? >> right. a combination of the height potentially, and the equipment on the lower part of the poll. what was a word that you used? i use junk, you use -- >> clutter. >> to see if i am capture what you want. we have a motion to grant appeals and denied the permits on the basis that it was not properly reviewed by the planning department because the planning department failed to do the proper analysis. it was reviewed only as a zoning protective location. it is a planning protective
location and the proposed design does not meet that standard because it creates a visual impact, because the poll is too big and the equipment is too large. on that motion. [roll call] that motion carries number-0. appeals are granted. thank you. >> we will now move on to item number 8. this is an appeal 19-032. molly sauer versus the zoning administrator. appealing the issuance on april 8, 2019 of a housing fee will be calculate it for an
approved project of the subject property which proposes to demolish a two-story plus mezzanine commercial building and construct a six story mixed-use building with 54 dwelling units above approximately 7500 square feet of ground floor and based went level square foot. this is record no. 2019-002026zad. >> good evening, land use counsel for the appellant. we have reams of paper in front of you, exhibits from us as well as lengthy legal brief that the zoning administrator has something similar. it is a simple question, despite the size of the package in front of you. that is does the appellant have to pay the affordable housing fee as it existed in 2018? or, does the appellant have to pay the 2019 version of the affordable housing fee? we believe the 2019 fee is the applicable fee. that is when they pulled their first construction document.
it is a 2018 version of the fee is an error. he claims it is triggered by the site permit which is a deviation from president and is being instituted with no notice to the appellant. a little quit -- quick background, it is a project approved in 2017. at the time of its approval, the project did what all projects do, the elect how to comply with the cities of starting hot -- affordable housing ordinance. the appellant chose to build units on site. at a clip of 14.5%. they chose not to pay the fee as it existed, the old fee, because at that time the old fee was unfair to small projects in small units. this projects approximate unit size would be about 500 square feet. it's tenant roster will be people in the public sector, hospitality workers, it will not fetch the same rent as trans bay because of that, economically,
it made no sense to pay the fee. in fact it made the project unviable to pay the old fee. in 2018, the planning department , the mayors office of housing, the comptroller went through a process of reevaluating how the fee is calculated, the affordable housing fee. they made a determination that the fee was unfair to small projects, with small square footage units. exhibit b to the zoning administrator's own brief has a copy of the comptroller's report that says exactly that. now the appellant seeks to pay the fee instead of building the units on site. they are allowed to do that. they have to go to the planning commission to which they would do. the question in front of you, shockingly it has to go to the board of appeals to answer this question. how much do they have to pay. there are several issues we need to consider. the first one primarily as notice to get the zoning administrator's and brief has an outline of chronology. at the end of that chronology you will see december 1st, 2018 a confirmation that notice
was sent to projects that had opted to pay the fee, that if they pulled a site permit, not a building permit, they would be locked into whatever the fee was , the methodology was, at that time. that notice did not go to the appellant. that is because the appellant wasn't planning to pay the fee. they began the process, and completed the entitlement process under the assumption that they were building units on site. january 1, 2019. the fee ordinance changes. the methodology changes. now the appellant wants to pay the fee. they are being told that in august of 2018 when they pulled a site permit, unbeknownst to them, they were locking in a fee schedule in 2018 despite the fact that fees in the city are paid, and are determined, the amount is determined when a building permit is pulled not a site permit. if we were to confirm the das understanding, and the das position here, you would be
frustrating the entire purpose of the change in the fee. the methodology was changed between 2018 and 2019 precisely so the projects like the appellant small projects in small units could pay the fee. in facts, the planning commission last month stated this on the record of the planning commission that in her mind, projects like the appellant should be encouraged to pay the fee. because, for several reasons, but primarily because the first one is, when a developer constructs small reserved affordable units, in a project, they tend to sit vacant. we provided significant amount of evidence in the record that those types of units shockingly in a city where there is obviously ongoing affordable housing races. these units don't go rented, the families don't reside at 500 square-foot units. consistent with commissioner melger's position. the city needs the funds. the position the planning commission is, let's see if we can get the affordable housing
fund to grow by having developers pay the fee. in this instance, the appellant wants to pay the fee. if they're forced into paying the 2018 fee they will build the units on site despite the fact it's inconsistent with the whole purpose of changing the fee structure. finally, there's going to be no disruption of the cities of a fallible horse -- housing program. because this is a very unique circumstance. a project that never opted to pay the fee. by saying we are building units on site. a site permit, no one told them by building a site permit you have suddenly walked yourself into the old way of calculated in fee and now in 2019 have pulled a building permit center being told if you want to switch to pay the fee you have to go back in time and pay it in 2018. in conclusion a couple of things you should bear in mind. this is a bureaucratic maze unfortunately. the board of appeals can help us out here. they should not be going back to
a site permit to be the trigger for when you pay your permits. there is no precedent for that. secondly, it runs contrary to the whole idea, the whole policy behind why this process underwent modification, meaning the fee schedule in the fee calculation. that is so smaller projects and smaller units could actually pay the fee as opposed to only choosing to build units. building those units isn't into resolving the affordable crowd housing crisis. he should bear those in mind respectfully request that you conclude that the 2019 fee is the appropriate fee and uphold the appeal. >> i'm, counselor? one question. what is the fee difference between the 2019 and 2018 schedule? >> i can give you the gross difference. >> page 8 of the brief. >> we don't have that calculation with us or get let
me just answer this, it is significant enough that i do not believe they would pay the fee. in i got it. and q, counselor. >> we will now hear from scott sanchez. >> thank you, scott sanchez planning department. also joined by dan adams who is deputy director for housing community development and jacob senior planner for for special projects and policy team for the planning department. intimately familiar with the process that led to the change of this policy and the methodology calculation. i appreciate that the appellant has put it down to a fine point. it really is a question of what methodology applies to the subject permit. i think with respect to what the appellant has said, it does have locations beyond this
application. which has caused grave concerns for the department. the appellant misunderstand how fees are assessed. they actually are assessed at site permit issuance. also in the building code. what happens later on is they are collected typically at first construction document. in the interim, if their annual indexing of the fees those get calculated then. when you pay your, ultimately, the first construction document. assessment occurs at site permit issuance. the application for this project was received in 2018. in part because they wanted to preserve their grandfather rate of having a lower affordability requirement of the on-site of 14.5%. that led to them getting the site permit.
apparently it has been a doable project for the applicant because they have demolished the building and they are working on construction. they have pursued demolition of the building, they are moving. what they are asking for in this case would be a reduction of the fee, a little over 1.3 million. i can understand its economic benefit for them to have the methodology applied. the new fee methodology was developed after years of process it's all cascaded down from prop c and outlined in our brief with the timeline. there was by which the board and the comptroller's office had planning work on a new methodology that was developed last year. in looking how this that changed, it is a discrete change and the calculation of the fee. we had determine how to apply that fairly, consistently, accurately and in line with our policies and procedures with the
planning code requirements. when the policy was ready to be implemented we developed clear standards of how to be applied. we stated if you had your site permit issued before december 31, 2018 that you are subject to the old fee methodology. if your site permit is issued after the date you are subject to the new fee methodology. at the time that, you know, the appellant was pursuing the project they had artie stated that they were going to apply by providing on-site units. now they want and they would like to use the new fee methodology because it is cost advantageous to them. the issue we have moving forward with this, first it and correct and inconsistent code application. we look at when the assessed and occurs, it is by permit issuance. that locks in the methodology for those calculations.
that is what the zoning administrator determined. it is what is on the policy that we announce to the public last year. they would like to overturn that for the benefit of this one project. there could be implications beyond this one project area for some projects, they may choose to go that route because it is less, but there are projects that may have -- end up paying more. in order to achieve a balance that is how we came up with our proposal which is in the letter to assess it appropriately and consistent with the code at the time of the site permit is issued. i think this covers the majority of our argument. we believe that this is a consistent manner to implement the well within the authority of the zoning administrator under planning code section 307, given the authority to establish procedures rules, regulations that are necessary to properly implement the planning code and further that the appellant has
not provided any evidence that the zone administrator has abuse of discretion in any way in making this determination. with that, i am available for any questions you we also have most of the staff here and the planning staff as i mentioned. >> mr. sanchez? the appellant, in the language that was drafted for the reduction of the affordable units or the buyout, does it say holding permit or does it say site permit? >> in term of the roles that we adopted as part of the implementation of this, it is at site permit area. >> in the appellant brief they made a difference indicating that there is a difference that the language said building permit rather than site permit. you are saying now it is a different language and it says site permit. >> amine so you have a fault permit which is, you know, we
building permit would be if you have all of your ability and you could construct everything. a site permit to go and you pay the subsequent addend is, you have your complete building permit package. >> i unfortunately know that all too well. the code is very clear, the outside permit is when assessed and is made. it is rick riordan we have to do a report to the project sponsor so they know what the fees are. >> the other question is, if the project sponsor never identified and initially decided to do, rather than pay the in loo, they were going to do on site. what about the notification argument? >> there is general public notice on our website that was broad, this was a public process developing these requirements. at that time they had already obtained their site permit.
>> thank you. i'm probably going to pile on the commissioner. basically what you are saying in the opinion of the zoning admitted straighter is that when the site permit was issued that is when the snapshot was taken. that is when they happen to have chose at that time to fulfill the housing rick met with physical product, but, at the same time if they would have chosen to pay a fee, that is when the snapshot is taken. that is when the game is over when that site permit is issued. even if you change your mind, as they did, and move from physical implementation of building housing unit, but then they change their mind. still, they are held to that moment in time which is when the
site permit was issued? >> and they made a business decision, at that time, for the reasons you stated that they wanted to build the housing. >> for purposes of the fee methodology that applies and how it will be assessed for this permit and all similar permit that it is based on the site permit issuance date. >> and your point of view, it was either going to be the fee at that moment or it was going to be products, they said we would do physical product trade we are not interested in paying the fee. then they change their mind so the fee at that moment kicked in , and that's it? >> under the planning code they still have the ability to go to the planning commission and request to pay the fee and the
planning commission may choose to accept that. but then there's the question of which methodology applies. we said given that it wasn't simply an annual adjust rent, which the letters of determination that they cited in their brief where we found it is the fee schedule in effect of the date of first construction document. there were no changes in the fee methodology for those areas those were simple annual updates. it's a more nuanced distinction here this is a change in the methodology. in order to properly implement that. we would developed a rule that we did in december which is that we are basing it on site issuance. if they want to go ahead and change to a fee now, they can. they are going to pay the fee that they would have had to pay back last year. we are not changing the rules on them. we are preserving the rules for them. they are the rules that were in effect when they got there permit. nothing has changed for them in that regard. they're not losing anything ragged.
>> from a legal standpoint, that judgment is clearly the legal rights of the zoning administrator? >> yes under planning code 307. >> there is an assertion by the appellant, that they were encouraged, to get their site permit when they did because rules were changing. not necessarily this rule, obviously out of proxy, lots of things have been changing all the time. i don't know if you can speak to that it all if you do feel like you are encouraging folks to pull their site permit. i felt that they were encouraged to pull their site permit so they did and perhaps could not anticipate. >> we encourage them to get their permits unbilled so so we can have the housing. we encourage the production of housing. i think that the project sponsor was very self encouraged to do this, because having a by december, pursuing that application they would preserve
their grandfather affordability rate. we were warning people. if you want to preserve those under the current law, get it by the state. then that ended up being extended by the board. we were working on the rules that were in effect at the time. i would think they were wanting to preserve their grandfather rate and that is what they did. >> to follow up with her, so the affordability that changed, it was 14.5% or 14% and i believe this building is over 25 units, right? what would that affordability aspect me right now? >> it is out 20% today. >> kind of tough to have your cake and eat it too, right? >> yes. >> there was a suggestion, you know, that the reason that these changes were made was to help
smaller units and that they're are all of these small units that are vacant. can you speak at all to the merits of that assertion. >> dan adams, deputy director of the housing community development. we definitely do not have affordable units sitting vacant. if they are rental units, we lease them quickly, we have lotteries, i don't have the documentation that he references , but from our perspective that is categorically not true. there is a housing crisis out there. we encourage both on-site unit and when folks want to pay the fees we make good use of those funds. we do our very best to deliver units in every way possible and we have a full team that is focused of leasing of the units very quickly. in terms of the fee methodology, the intention of the methodology change was based on a desire to encourage the fee out for smaller units.
that is also not true. there were significant changes in the fee methodology mandated to our office through prop c. which changed the basis by which we calculated the per unit fee. the old fee actually had a calibrated fee based on the size of units of meaning the number of bedrooms per units. we had a lower fee for one bedroom, a higher fee for two bedrooms, a higher fee for three bedrooms. the new methodology it became a basic per unit fee. so, that was mandated through prop c. we then, for reasons of administrative ease worked with the planning department to translate our per unit fee calculation to gross square foot fee calculation. this is consistent with the way other impact fees are applied. administratively it is much more advantageous. it also means that smaller units are not prejudice in the new fee
application. under the old fee, four bedrooms. under the new fee, you would have had the same fee whether you are building a five or a 2,000 square-foot luxury building. that change was administratively advantageous and had the effect of not prejudicing smaller unit, or alleviating burden on larger luxury units. it brings more parity to the application fee. >> thank you, mr. adams. >> i have a question, sir. i mean, there is a reason why they changed it as you just explain. the below-market for the bmr housing, i mean, do you have any idea of of vacancy or non- vacancy?
as far as violators of that program, and what enforcement is being done. >> i do not have that to stick some vacancies read i do know sometimes when we work with news answers, sponsors mean project sponsors. they are challenged to meet our marketing requirements which ensure fair housing law and ensure broad distribution of opportunity. we go through a lottery process. there can be delays in these, especially with new operators on new providers are folks who are not accustomed to our rules. >> i get it. as a realtor for 21 years, i deal with the mayor's office and have two bmr mrs right now. >> excellent. are they leased up? >> no. you shouldn't ask that question. [laughter] the question is here, i noticed that the policy has changed recently and the bmr system is quite different.
as the appellants had mentioned. i would like to get a number of vacancies and violators, because there is evidently a reason why the system changed. >> i do not know what system change you are referring to. we were discussing a change in the fee methodology. it should not have any impact on a lease up or vacancies on the bmr unit. those are separate issues. i'd be happy to come back and report on vacancies in our bmr program. >> i didn't mean to off track. >> i want to make clear that our team is dedicated to ensuring a lease up happens as quickly as possible. >> thank you. >> any public comment on this item? moving on rebuttal. >> thank you.
i am disguised with glasses here. if you want to answer a question about the vacancies, our brief is freely available. we have identified units that are vacant in assistant. the other issue whether you want to call it prejudice, or unfair. the fact of the matter is, small units under the old system, it was unfair to them. i think that was just stated differently then i stated it. more to it the central question here that president swig and honda, all due respect to the zoning and a, we know when the fees are paid area they pay the fees. they pay the fees with a building permit. they did not pay the childcare fee, this year, they use the 2018 fee, because the site are was issued in 2018. they pay the childcare fee as a cost now. what he is saying is semantics. it is assessed. that means it is applied. when the project was approved,
you will be paying the affordable housing fee, or you will be complying with providing on-site units. the amount is not determined with site permits. it is determined that building permit. in this case, the rules are not applied the same way they are typically. >> thank you. >> thank you, scott sanchez, planning department. the assessment is made at site permit issuance. that includes a notice to them. that does include the amount. it may not be the amount they ultimately pay. there is indexing, so there is annual indexing and the amount may go up and they would pay that when it is due, because it is collected with the first construction document. this is different. this is not an indexing question. this is the to properly, fairly, consistently, legally implement that we develop the rules outlined in the zoning of illustrators letter. those are made publicly available last december.
that is how all projects are treated fairly and consistently. the appellant has never requested a change of the project so they could take advantage of a lower fee. as outlined in the letter of determination, they are subject to the methodology that was in place at the time of the site permit. that is how we have implemented this area in respect to the enforcement, i can speak to that. that is a separate issue from the fee methodology. we do have a very robust program working with the city attorney's office. we meet monthly. there has been numerous litigation working with the city attorney's office on violators read it is very stringently enforced. there have been settlements in the millions of dollars for violation of these bmr's area. >> you need to get all mark on. >> i'm available for any questions. >> if i was driving on the road, and the fee limit was -- --
speed limit was 45, and i got pulled over and my fever going 55 in 845 was assessed then that would be my assessed rent and if i went to the judge six-month later because the speed limit suddenly was made 65 in zone. i should not have to pay a fee because now it is a 65-mile per hour speed limit. this is the argument, what i'm hearing here, from the appellant is, no, i should not have to pay the fee that i was assessed at site permit because the rules have changed. in fact, the rules are the rules of the time that the site permit was issued. that was the fee, or it was the option of building up the units. >> it is hard to compare the planning code to anything. [laughter]
there was a change in in the fee methodology. we had to determine how to implement that. it is based on the site permit issuance date where is consistent with the permitting code. yes, the fees may not generally be collected until first construction document. here it wasn't just a routine indexing of the fee, it was a change of the fee methodology. that is why we are in the situation. >> again, the v.a. is legally entitled to take that position? >> that is correct. >> i think that is what we are talking about today. >> thank you. >> that darn zoning administrator, the previous one was worse. >> thank you. >> heard my position.
>> i will make a motion to deny the appeal on the basis that the letter of determination did not abuse discretion of zoning admitted strata. -- administrator. >> we have a motion from vice president lazarus to deny the appeal and uphold the determination. the letter of determination is properly issued. on that motion. [roll call] that motion passes 4-0. the appeal is denied. >> can we take a seven minute break?
>> we are now one item number 9. approval. the subject property is 192113 street. protesting the issuance on may 6 , 2019. no work at the middle unit. this is application 20109... and as a pull them in every matter, the attorney for the permit holder would like to address the board. he would like to state for the record that he is willing -- the permit holder is willing to cancel the permit. so we will give him three minutes to address the board and
then the appellants will have an opportunity to respond to that. this is prior to. so mr. fisher, if you could please take a seat. excellent. >> in the cancellation will have the same effect as if the appellant one this case, correct >> correct. we'll hear from both sides. let's hear first. >> welcome, councillor. >> i was hired on this case yesterday afternoon. i tried to get up to speed as quickly as possible. in looking at that case in talking with the owners, it seems like the right thing to do is cancel the permit. it is a situation that no one likes to be in and i would like to try and find a better way through this with the tenants,
with the appellants to the extent that they have personal interest in this. we would like to request at this point that the permit be cancelled administratively. if we have to go through an appeal hearing, we are prepared to argue the appeal, but i think the better thing to happen is to try and find a resolution for the tenants. my understanding is that negotiations broke down under previous council and i would like to restart that and find some resolution. at the end of the day, this building does meet -- it does need to be made safe, but hopefully we can find something that works for all of them involved. thank you very much. i'm happy to answer any questions. >> councillor, what would be the benefit of this board really pushing control by cancelling the permit? i mean by continuing it when we
get the case? we would therefore see it before the purview of this body. >> the board certainly can do that. as i have said, we are prepared to argue the case. this permit that is before you today is to add roof decks and roofs. this is not for substantial rehabilitation. this is additional work, separate work, and the owners are happy to do that. it is not really the issue that the appellant is here to talk about. thank you. >> thank you. >> mr. fisher, you have three minutes to respond to this. >> this is all news to me. i guess the real question is that they need to grant us the appeal. the tenants want housing.