This has been an interesting year for GSMOL. In the latest CALIFORNIAN, Tim Sheahan, GSMOL State President, writes of 2006 as a year of ups and downs. Tim has had to take over the duties of editor of the CALIFORNIAN now that Justin Pecot has left.
GSMOL continues to lose members and must cut services because of low membership. The most recent CALIFORNIAN covers a three month period from January to March 2007. “Without greater membership or increasing the amount of advertising, we cannot publish a full CALIFORNIAN every month.” There is no indication when the next CALIFORNIAN will be coming out.
Tim continues: “(GSMOL) waged a successful defeat of Proposition 90.”
GSMOL has a very short paragraph on the new initiative being proposed: “The Howard Jarvis Taxpayer Association has reportedly filed an initiative with the California Secretary of State…”
GSMOL’s ELF fund is finally being used, after five years, to help a GSMOL member whose small claims win was appealed by the park owner in superior court.
Finally Tim appeals to GSMOL members to become part of the GSMOL Team.
NOW FOR THE FACTS
In fact, the battle to defeat Proposition 90 was waged by hundreds of organizations. CoMO-CAL was one of the first organizations to join the “No on 90 people,” who raised over eleven million dollars. Yet Proposition 90 was only defeated by a narrow 5% margin.
If you remember, late February 2006, CoMO-CAL President Frank Wodley alerted GSMOL leaders after learning on February 24, 2006 that California Senator Tom McClintock was going to start gathering signatures to put an initiative on the ballot …that will outlaw rent control.
CoMO-CAL continued to write about Proposition 90 a full eight months and mailed over 5,000 fliers into mobilehome parks alerting residents to vote NO on Propositon 90.
Regarding the “California Property Owners Protection Act,” there have been three different proposals, the latest 07-0003 is waiting for a “Title and Summary” (Due 4/20/07) from the California Attorney General. The League of California cities has their own “eminent domain” initiative “Homeowners and Private Property Protection Act” which does not attack rent control.
Regarding GSMOL’s Enforcement Legal Fund, it was initiated January 2002. GSMOL asked members to contribute $10 per year for coverage. I’ve always been against the ELF fund, primarily for two reasons. First, the goal of $250,000 to begin use of the fund was simply unrealistic. It would have taken over 10 years to reach such a goal, all the while not helping one member. Secondly, GSMOL never gave members a simple plan how the funds would be used and who would qualify. In fact when first introduced, the ELF fund would only be available if you had over 75% of all park residents in a chapter—a goal again out of reach!
GSMOL members MUST take an active roll in their organization. How many GSMOL members know that their Board of Directors decided a member would get NO CREDIT for ELF contributions in excess of $10 over the last five years? And I’m sure many gave $10 per year for a total of $50. If I were GSMOL leadership, I would have at least given members an option—more coverage, or make anything over $10 a donation to GSMOL or get their money back. Please, do not just sit back, participate in your organization or suffer the consequences! That applies to CoMO-CAL also! Question/Question/Question!