Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Developer Demands Increased Breeding

The always loopy Michael D. Pattinson, CEO of mega-huge developer Barratt American, writes an especially strange column this week in the North County Times. link

No growth results in higher tax burden

By: MICHAEL D. PATTINSON - For the North County Times

Anyone who ever puts one brick on top of another soon learns the no-growth mantra: New homes create so many problems with roads, schools, parks and police that new homebuyers have to pay $100,000 in additional taxes to solve them.

But sometimes even that is not enough, as members of the Ecke family found out last year when voters rejected plans to turn their Encinitas farmland into new homes. Opponents said city services for the new homebuyers would be too costly, ignoring the huge budget surpluses and other benefits that new homeowners are generating in North County cities.

The main argument against Prop A was that Paul Ecke III already had previously signed a legal binding document promising to keep their land agricultural in "perpetuity". Also, I don't know what huge budget surplus Pattinson is referring to because the city of Encinitas is borrowing $20 million dollars to pay for the library, Hall park and fire mansions.

If growth is costly, no growth can be downright catastrophically expensive. Just ask the 2,750 "outraged" residents of Encinitas and Carlsbad who have been paying $800 a year for almost 10 years to finance a middle school only to learn recently it is no longer required.

Pattinson loves to use dodgy logic for his causes. He should rail against these scammy taxes called "Mello Roos". A cute name for a bad tax. The homeowners paying $800 didn't realize they should have had more kids to make the tax worth it. He thinks the problem is that not enough homes were built in the area resulting in not enough kids to create a new school. This is how developers think people.

The reason is simple enough: Not enough children. The kind of children that would have lived in the nearby Ecke Ranch.

I don't remember this argument in the pro Prop A mailers. "We must convert our farmland to housing so that an elementary school can be built in Carlsbad."

The Ecke proposal lost by a 2-1 margin. I do not remember these outraged citizens fighting for their school when it counted the most: During last year's election when the NIMBYs shut down the homes that would have made this school viable.

Some of those NIMBY's who voted against Prop A ironically live in the Barratt homes built next to the golf course. They didn't want more traffic and wanted to keep their views of farmland, not houses. Also, is Pattinson suggesting that NIMBYs make up 2-1 of the population?

Today, some would have it both ways: Shut down housing opportunities for families, then demand we open new schools for kids that are no longer there. These are the same kind of folks who shut down roads, then wonder why we have traffic problems.

What roads is he talking about? Anyone? And, there is no way he was sober when he wrote this gem "then demand we open new schools for kids that are no longer there"

Curiously, Ecke opponents are silent about their role in closing the school.

Technically, the "Ecke opponents" should be called Prop A opponents. Curiously, no opponents actually closed down a school, that is all in his head. So what is there to be silent about?

The school might be canceled, but the tax is forever. There will be no refund. School officials, however, have assured the "outraged" residents that the millions they paid in taxes for the new school will be well spent on other projects.

This should be the meat of Pattinson's article. These people should receive refund checks and Mello Roos should be abolished in this country. Pattinson doesn't care about the tax, he is just mad because it was his company that was up for the contract to build the Ecke homes.

Call it a no-growth tax ---- just another of the many real costs the NIMBYs have imposed on the rest of us without our permission or even knowledge.

Can you imagine getting cornered by Pattinson at the office Christmas party after he's had a couple? He's hovering over you, red faced and bad breath, slurring and pointy his finger into your chest "The NIMBYs have imposed on us without our permission or knowledge." You nod and smile politely and try to slink away but you can't.

The city of Carlsbad recently caused a firestorm when it released a study saying a no-growth proposal would cost tens of millions of dollars. Another no-growth tax.

It's unclear what Pattinson means here. I'm guessing he's talking about this story. Pattinson is odd because he seems to ping pong his support for taxes.

The city of Oceanside is having the same kind of problem. Recent news stories show that enrollment in Oceanside schools is down by 623 students. That means the district will lose out on more than $3 million in state aid this year.

I thought Oceanside was full of illegal aliens that were overflowing our schools with their kids? That's what I heard on a.m. radio anyway.

Another no-growth tax: The costs residents have to bear after decades of shutting down the production of new homes in the North County ---- forcing up prices and forcing our young people to move to Riverside if they wish to buy their first home.

What young people? I thought the big problem was we don't have enough kids? And aren't home prices finally coming down to reasonable levels now?

The consequences of a generation of no-growth policies are clear and expensive. And here is just the latest: More and more of our towns have fewer and fewer children.

We should ban all forms of birth control and start knocking up girls on their 18th birthday. That should do the trick.

The implications of this anti-child policy were largely hidden from us when they were first proposed. We didn't vote for a single one.

Nevertheless, every day we pay our no-growth taxes.

Pattinson is very clever but I am on to him. I think he wants you to invite him over for dinner and sex with all the fertile women in your family.


Why can't you ladies by more like this mom of 9? Mom Has Quadruplets 3 Years After Triplets. (she has 2 older kids as well).


  1. Is Pattinson Mormon? Just asking, no reason.

  2. Maybe if the houses Barratt builds were not so expensive then more big families could afford them.

  3. How many kids does Pattinson have and where do they attend school?

  4. Why would Encinitas kids attend a school in Carlsbad?

  5. I didn't know whether to laugh, cry or cream when I read his article. The homes He wants built in the Ag preserve were all going to be million+, the average couples moving to the area today, because of high dollar monster homes have to choose between living close to the coast or having a family and living further inland. Those who are wealthy enough to live on the coast and have kids send them to private schools. I not against wealthy young couples or million dollar homes but Pattison logic is lacking if he believes that not putting mansions in the preserve is the reason the school isn't being built. If someone started building 3bedroom homes for 600,000, starting families might be able to consider establishing roots here. By his way of thinking Pacific View school closed because we didn't build fast enough in an area where there is no more buildable land. Pattison just kills me.

  6. What gets me is why the North County Times uses this jokester, Pattinson as a twice monthly columnist.

    He is not logical, he is like a walking lobbyist for Barratt. He tries to put the blame for everything that's wrong with our economy on people who are concerned about over development, including traffic, and lack of water availability.

    It is common knowledge that the birthrate does go down as per capita income goes up. In this city, one needs big bucks, indeed, to be able to buy into the American Dream. Don't blame those who want to preserve their neighborhoods and to hold big landholders to the promises of their forefathers.

  7. My daughter and son-in-law moved to San Marcos because of the high prices here. They are paying Mello-Roos; but there the developer (not Barratt) did keep its promise and immediately built Discovery Hills Elementary School, which is great for the grandsons.

    Those people who paid for something promised, not provided could consider a class action lawsuit. Unfortunately lawsuits are one of the only ways we can hold officials accountable.

  8. common sense math guySeptember 13, 2006 8:39 PM

    If enrollement is down in Oceanside then it does not require the extra funds. Smaller class sizes will be a blessing for the kids trying to learn.

  9. common sense math guy,
    when enrollment goes down the schools just lay off new teachers.
    Class size does not go down. California is always in the top 5 states for most kids per teacher.
    When i started teaching 15 years ago my avg. class size was 26, now it is 32.
    Pattinson's headline should have been, "Have sex now, save a teacher's job."
    At least I'm doing my part.

  10. Common sense says that the schools should not lay off the teachers. That is a shame.

  11. More kids o.k. but no more jews please.

  12. Please have more children. I need future soldiers to die in the middle east.

  13. Hey you guys, don't post under names that are not yours, 'kay? Thanks.

  14. While watching the world news one night at the height of Bush's illegal slaughter in Iraq, the anchor man said "every American family should have three children. One for the father, one for the mother and one for the country."
    I threw up.

  15. hey, JP, we find it ironic that you are not willing to delete the "f" word, but you deleted the post, from before, supposedly from Jerome Stocks? Did someone threaten you? I hope not. We are protected by the 1st Amendment here, I hope.

    Couldn't you have changed the previous post to Jerome S? I have not liked some of the previous posts, but I thought the one by JS was rather innocuous. I don't see why you felt pressured to delete.

    Just wondering. I don't know about Pattinson being a member of the Church of LDS, but I know the man who got hit by the train is. He is diabetic, and there is no indication he was drinking, according to the news.

  16. Our children no longer belong to us. They have been annexed by the corporations and become nothing more than products for sale or consumers to spend. It is meglomaniacs like Mr. Pattinson and Mr. Murdoch who are drafting our precious innocent children into a plastic world run by souless pedophiles.

  17. What exactly would Jerome threaten me with? Noogies and wedgies?

  18. When I went to school in Hermosa Beach there were three elementary two junior high schools and two four year high schools. Today only one single school remains for grades one through eight and Aviation High is an industrial park.Sad but true the land is too expensive for families, and the new move ins shack up or eat BC pills and don't want the hassle of kids.Regardless of Pattison the big wave of LA is here.So get your board and hang a few rights

  19. Please come to the Leucadia Town Council Candidate Forum at Paul Ecke Central School, Thurs., SEPT 21, 7pm

    (I know this is slightly off topic, but I did use the word "school" and "Paul Ecke")

  20. Wouldn't any kids living in the Prop A development gone to Capri or Paul Ecke (formerly Central school)???

  21. Pattison is overflowing with sour grapes (as evidenced by the bloated photo). The housing industry is on its ass and the picture is getting bleaker by the day. Several large homebuilders have closed operations in San Diego and the rest are downsizing. This has nothing to do with Prop A or any other quality of life measures. It has everything to do with the creative financing that this industry has lived by and will now die by. Zero down, negative amortization, and stated income loans are a thing of the past. He should thank the No on A folks because otherwise he would be sitting on his cookie cutter mansions built on the Ecke property and hoping for buyers.
    Good luck in your next career Pattison.

  22. How does he come up with the $100,000 figure mentioned in the first paragraph?

  23. J.P. There is always the "land shark" Jerome could get you with. Watch out!

    Gil: Nice to see you posting again. I've missed you and your ideas. Too bad about Sabine huh?

  24. What happened to Sabine?

  25. answer to promisesSeptember 15, 2006 3:50 PM

    You wonder why the NC Times lets Pattison rant on a twice monthy basis with or without facts. Look through the Homes and Real Estate section on Sunday and guess how much Barratt spends, then multiply by at least 52.

  26. Is anyone gong to tell us what happened to Sabine? Come on Gil, seems like you must know or why would Dr. Lori post it? Also, Dr. Lori, why don't you tell us?

  27. Don't vote for DalagerSeptember 15, 2006 9:23 PM

    Hey, in today's Coast News, there is an article, beginning on bottom right hand side of front page, about a law recently signed by Schwarznegger that limits the fees cities can tack onto the price of new homes. I wonder if our City Attorney and Planning know about this? Because when they recently passed some of the new increases in permitting fees and fees associated with building, in general, I recall that for new build at least (I'm not sure about remodels on this) there were a lot of big fees to help with the library and park acquisition and development, in addition to traffic mitigation fees (that is to be expected, as well as fees for connecting to the existing sewer and water infrastructure).

    State Senator Mark Wyland, who authored the bill, stated "the fees must be connected to the cost of the development."

    This was actually already part of the law, but this is more specific as many cities have been abusing the law. "You can't say we need a new library," said Wyland.

    I am not pro big development in any way, but I do believe that California prices are already way too high. The laws were made to be related to the cost of development, not to raise money for the cities' general funds, any city.

    Our Council seems desperate for money. They just passed a $20 million revenue bond that was set up using the non-existing "revenue stream" of our library to avoid a public vote on a general obligation bond.

    Last Wednesday's Council Meeting was excellent. Many people blasted City Council, especially Bossypants Guerin and Dan Dalager, her unquestioning pawn.

  28. The Encinitas city council will make up the "loss" of the building fees by tacking on more "use" fees to all the city departments and the sewer, water, and lighting and landscaping districts. Since the departments get their money from the general fund, the only outside fees being paid will be from the sewer and water ratepayers. The lighting and landscaping districts funds are already depleted, so expect a new ballot vote for increasing the fees.

  29. Have no idea if this is true but I heard that Pattison and Sabine were up to something and Gil found out. He isn't saying what it is, so makes me wonder if it has anything to do with Dr. Lorris post.

  30. Wow, do tell about what is going on, Gil, and Dr. Lorri!

    I actually read the ruling re the former Barratt lawsuit against the City of Encinitas that has finally been settled.

    The ruling talked about the City of Encinitas should not use "unfettered discretion," when it comes to raising fees. In some instances, this was done without Council ratification or public hearing. The ruling stated that the city is required to notice the developers and the general public, to have a public hearing; Council is required to pass an ordinance that officially raises the fees. So when the newspaper article speaks to Jerome Stocks stating the City would have better future communication with Barratt, this is what was required by the Court. But these "notices" are to be public, not private!

    Part of the lawsuit was dismissed because the City did have "hearings" (probably consent calendar), Council did vote, and pass the fee increase. On this part, Barratt didn't appeal on time. But the law had said that the raises in fees were to be realated to the City's actual costs. Barratt couldn't challenge that, because of the statute of limitations. They have, we all have, I believe, only 60 days after Council passes a new "ordinance," to appeal it through the courts. Too bad, that doesn't seem long enough, particularly because the City gets six months to pursue many "remedies," and is often not held to even that term.

    Unfair City practices! We wouldn't be surprised at all that Sabine and Pattinson are now having private conversations.

    What's up?

  31. Maybe Glenn Sabine, our shady City Attorney is secretly talking to Pattinson about the new law that was just passed, at the state level, that reaffirms the limitations on fees charged for planning and building re permits and all fees associated with development or redevelopment?

    Sounds like Mark Wyland could have used Encinitas as a model for the abusive fees the new law is designed to curtail. Yes, these fees could add $100,000 to the price of a new home. We heard this, personally, at a past Council Meeting!

  32. J.P. I am so sorry that this post has nothing to do with your post, but I just read something very sad to me in the NCTimes Letters to the Editor section, and since they recently printed something I wrote, I know they won't print something else right away. Ms. Diane Baxter wrote in today's (9-16-06) paper that she felt sad that the City of Encinitas was not being inclusive of people of Jewish heritage. She felt that they were not valued as members of our cvommunity. The reasons she states are 1) the changing of the name of the Holiday Parade to Christmas Parade and 2) the event Operation Homecoming, that Dan Dalagher set up as a coup for Encinitas, is going to be held on one of the Jewish Holy days Rosh Hashanah. It does seem very uninclusive. I doubt if the Council would have set up something this important to our City on Christmas Eve. I am not of Jewish heritage, however, I want all people to be included in our community and I am so sorry that the Council did this. If anyone knows Ms. Diane Baxter, please let her know that at least one Encinitas resident wants her in the community. I will be personally boycotting the event, even though I had planned on attending. Thanks J.P. for having this blog.

  33. Regarding the questions about Sabine. I can't respond to these on the blog. Maybe Gil can. Sorry.

  34. About housing prices,

    "I do believe prices are too high"

    " Yes, these fees could add $100,000 to the price of a new home."

    The fees add to the cost of production. Unfortunately, some of these fees have been abused by municipalities. Shame on them and their constituents from letting them do that.

    Here in Encinitas, you know things are bad when the developer cozy council majority raise permitting fees at the same time they are raking in record revenues already.

    The price of houses is wildly decoupled from the cost of production. Any savings in the cost of production is going straight to the developer, not the consumer! Good for them, but shame on them for lying to the public and saying housing prices are high because of fees.

    here is a place to start to learn about the housing bubble that finally the mainstream media is willing to talk about ->

    As for getting rid of fees entirely? Should we do that? It depends on what the fees are paying for. Is it something that has to be done as a consequence of the new development? If yes, then if the developers don't pay for it who will?

    You will. You will be subsidizing the developers.

  35. We think the "Operation Homecoming" is really a way to promote Dalager and glorify the current war through performance arts. We want our soldiers to be able to come home as much or more than anyone.

    Glorifying the current administration, using patriotism to exclude those that don't agree with Bush or Dalager, or to exclude a huge part of our Judeo Christian heritage is not in our best interests. We do support the arts and our troops, but not this attempt to turn our concern about bringing our soldiers home into a PR event for Dan Dalager.

    We will be boycotting this event, and will be boycotting Dan Dalager come November by voting against him and against his buddy, Doug Long who hopes to replace Bossy Guerin. The business owners had begun the Holiday Parade. They didn't ask for it to be changed to the Christmas Parade.

    Dalager will lose votes on this issue, because he has again divided our community, when no one had publically come forward and objected, before, to the Holiday Parade designation. His story, at the forum, about his now deceased friend made no sense, and is blatant hyperbole. Dead women tell no tales.

  36. Thanks for the link, Bubble Boy.

    Hey, no one thinks Council should get rid of all fees. Those fees that are directly related to the costs of inspection of the new development, or to infrastructure costs, such as road improvements, are to be expected.

    However, some of the fees are excessive. And yes, the cost of production of the homes is way out of whack with the cost charged to new home buyers. In our case, a shady developer, bought two lots next door, on a handshake deal with the true owner's brother, who lived in Fresno, depriving the true owner (then in a convalescent hospital, now deceased) and her estate of the home being placed on the market. In Sept. of 1999, two lots, including one home were bought for $300,000 of mortgaged money through Harold Bream, who did not go through his broker, Coldwell Banker, doing, instead, a "pocket deal" with Richard A. Larsen.

    Many more liens were placed on the properties. One home sold this year for $1,100,000.00. The other sits, seemingly abandoned, undone. People are coming around, looking for the developer, saying they are owed big bucks, one saying she has been cheated out of her life's savings.

    We hope that other house eventually gets completed and sold so all those suckers who invested, without having their "loans" collateralized, will finally be repaid. This "in-fill" developer, Signature Series, Inc., aka Richard Larsen, gives all developers a bad name. Our neighborhood has suffered through his shady development practices, dust, noise, and worse, since before he bought the house, beginning in April of 1999. The house at 420 La Veta still sits without electricity, without a garage door, without any landscaping. It is an eyesore. When we complained that Larsen has been a plague on our community, the City took sides, and sued us, supposedly for being a public nuisance, at the behest of our dishonorable City Attorney, Glenn Sabine.

    I hope he's kicked out of office soon.

  37. Glenn Sabine has a direct conflict of interest due to his romantic interest and affiliation with Jennifer Smith, Finance Director, and his refusal to release her qualification information after numerous public information requests, and a letter of demand from Calaware, published before, on this blog.

    Sabine should not be the one making the calls on releasing or not releasing info on someone he has an ongoing personal relationship with, which includes romantic liasons abroad.

    I don't think he could be kicked out of "office," because, technically, he is not an officer. He is contracted. His contract could be terminated, with notice. He was squirmming at the last Council Meeting, we noticed.

  38. Our City Attorney does not act in the public's interest or even stay within the lines of decency. The Tanner incident shows that he either doesn't know even the most basic public policy laws or he doesn't bother to bother to live by them.


  39. Thank you, Bubble Boy, for bringing that City Beat editorial article back to our attention.

    I did a search, and discovered that my letter to the editor about that article was published on 3/29/06. Somehow we had missed this!

    Sabine & Morrison have no incentive to settle or to give fair treatment to citizens of Encinitas. They act as personal attorneys, practically, for Council and staff. They get paid by the hour, so the more they litigate, at our expense, the more they profit.

  40. I am not defending Pattinson or the Ecke's, but I do know that Barratt did not have a contract or any other kind of agreement with the Ecke's to build on the prop A land. That is not to say he wouldn't have liked to.

  41. JP this is your best post since Pattinson wrote about how great China is!!

  42. Hey Gil. Why don't you speak up about Glen Sabine. At least Dr. Lorri said she coudn't say. You usually have plenty of things to say on all subjects. And when people get mad at you, yu say you will post anyway. No offense my friend, but this does look a little strange. Please tell us something.

  43. Gil,
    Speak up about Glenn Sabine.

  44. Can someone please tell me more about this developer Richard Larsen and his shady dealings??


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