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  • Giselle Hale

A look at the candidates who want to replace Assemblyman Kevin Mullin

Giselle Hale has plans for more housing

EMILY MIBACH , May 23, 2022, The Daily Post

Giselle Hale has plans for more housing

If elected to the District 21 seat in the state Assembly, Redwood City Mayor Giselle Hale would try to make it easier for school districts to build employee housing.

Hale, a Democrat, pointed to the Redwood City School District’s plans to build 87 apartments and 170,000-square-feet of office space where its current district office stands at 750 Bradford St. in downtown Redwood City. Hale said that the lengthy process that the district and other districts that want to build employee housing must go through ought to be sped up a little.

That’s just one of the ideas Hale says she will bring with her to Sacramento if elected to represent the Assembly district that spans from South San Francisco to Redwood City. The district’s current Assemblyman, Kevin Mullin, is not seeking another two-year term in favor of running to replace Rep. Jackie Speier in Congress.

Hale, 43, has been on the Redwood City Council for four years, and before that was on the city’s Planning Commission. She has worked for Facebook and Cisco. Hale has also worked in President Obama’s 2008 campaign and was Rep. Anna Eshoo’s campaign manager that year. Most recently, she was the Chief Operating Officer at Political Data Inc., but stepped down from her position due to a conflict of interest between the firm and her run for Assembly.

Supported SB9 and SB10

Hale said she supported the controversial lot split bill SB9 and SB10, which lets housing developments of 10 units or less be approved without a public hearing or council approval. She is endorsed by SB10’s author, Sen. Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco. But Hale pointed out that SB9 ended up being much ado about nothing, with her city’s usually busy planning department not getting any lot split proposals. She said city planners estimate there will be about 200 SB9-initiated lot splits over the next seven years. On the other hand, there will be about 500-600 granny units, or accessory dwelling units, built in Redwood City over that same amount of time.

Hale has a series of housing-related ideas, and touts the housing record to back it up.

Redwood City has met its housing goals and is planning to surpass the new goals set by the state. Hale commented that she’s approved more housing projects than anyone else seeking the seat. The city’s draft housing element states that the city has approved 1,406 homes across seven projects.

Bond measure for housing

She expressed interest in exploring a statewide bond measure to get cities money to help build lower income housing. She also brought up changing the state’s environmental laws related to planning to speed housing projects up.

Hale has two daughters, ages 5 and 8, and she said child care and education are of upmost importance to her. Worried that child care centers would have to shut down at the peak of Covid, she worked with other child care advocates to create the Covid Childcare Relief Fund, which provided $5 million in funding to keep 340 child care providers. If elected, she wants to expand childcare, sick and family leave to help families across the state.


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