… but maybe we need to create Poor Town for workers
It’s clear after another decision by the Planning Commission (this time for Alta Sierra) that there is only one answer to the issue of affordable housing in Nevada County: The creation of “Poor Town.”
Let’s face it, folks. The time for playing politically correct games about affordable housing should come to an end.
Developers don’t want to build it because the money is in monster mansions.
The rural quality folks don’t want it because the reason they came to live here was to get away from the riffraff in the first place.
Local government doesn’t want it because it brings a ton of headaches like traffic and other problems with it.
But the fact of the matter is that sooner or later, something needs to be done, if only to keep the feds and the state off of our backs.
I say we create “Poor Town.”
First we find the ugliest piece of land in Nevada County. It does have to be close enough to Grass Valley and Nevada City so the low-wage service workers who will live there will be able to get to work. If they can’t work, what is the point of them living here anyway, right?
We can put in some giant septic tanks and run a recycled water pipe out to the place.
This would be an excellent opportunity to experiment with treated recycled water.
I’m sure there are any number of grants available for something like this, and maybe the residents of Poor Town could be used for medical experiments, too! This could help recoup some of the expenses for building Poor Town and perhaps lead to advances in the understanding of environmental cancers.
We then need to construct super-dense housing – stacked one on top of the other and side by side so tight that light can’t be seen in the cracks!
Some kind of semi-high rise approach will be necessary, but we’ll make sure that they go no higher than can be effectively hidden from sensitive eyes.
They already do something like this with logging. When you look from the road, it all looks like trees and all that; but when you look from the air, it’s all cleared out.
We won’t need any parking, because owning a car will be illegal for residents of Poor Town. That saves on room, traffic and pollution.
There will be public transportation, but only enough to facilitate employment and get these folks out of town so they don’t impact tourism in any negative way.
In addition to the super-dense housing, more than one family will be required to live in each unit. To further cut down on traffic there will be a Company Store at the site -kind of like a Food Bank, only you pay for your goods in scrip.
All rental agreements in Poor Town will include a clause that says in addition to waiving all constitutional rights and protections, anyone who resides in Poor Town will only be paid in scrip redeemable in Poor Town.
This won’t affect the local economy (other than for whoever has the contracts for Poor Town services) because none of these people will be able to afford to do anything but work and go home.
Of course we’ll also need to construct the Poor Town government annex, which will have a police station, a jail, a courtroom.
There will be an extensive rulebook and community service program that will ensure that, after a few short months, all Poor Town residents will be on probation and sentenced to maintain and repair Poor Town as a condition of their release from jail and continued residency.
Other basic government services such as health services will be limited to enough to maintain the work force and comply with government regulations.
Day care and education will be on-site and mandatory. No one wants these Poor Town brats messing around with the real kids who live here. These services can also be part of the mandatory pay-deduction program and Poor Town rental agreement.
There will be testing and accountability for every resident of Poor Town. The curriculum will reflect the needs of the community, so that the children of these workers will understand the value of what’s being done for them and gratefully follow in their parents’ footsteps!
Any violation of any rule in the ‘Poor Town Program’ – whether written or unwritten, spoken or unspoken, implied or not implied by a resident of Poor Town, their family members, friends, enemies or people they have never even met – carries with it immediate expulsion, confiscation of all goods and accounts! There is no appeal and no recourse!
So there you have it. Poor Town: A solution for affordable housing in Nevada County!
Now, that wasn’t so hard, was it?
Mike Thornton is a resident of Grass Valley.
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