Very few people that live in their SoMa live-work lofts actually "work" in their lofts.  Most people just use their lofts as housing, rather than the art work spaces that were envisioned by the city when the lofts were approved to be built between 1998 and 2000.  Supervisor Sophie Maxwell is proposing charging loft owners that do not use their space to run a business to pay a penalty fee.

Some of the proposed penalty fees for individuals not using their lofts for "work" could be as high as $150 per square foot.  This would be a $195,000 fee assessment for a 1300 sq. ft. unit.  Wow, that almost sounds like a mob shakedown.  Somehow, I doubt that the city wants to shakedown 3,000 well-heeled loft owners in SoMa that could organize themselves into a class-action against the city. 

Let’s see how this plays out, but I doubt that the city is organized enough or has enough moxie to try this type of shakedown.  Trust me, I know a lot of lawyers that live in SoMa lofts and they are likely salivating at the thought of a class-action against the city to see who ultimately shakes down who.

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