Initiative 135 would create a “Seattle Social Housing Developer,” a brand-new quasi-government entity.

The measure, which will be decided on the Feb. 14 ballot, has no funding source, though boosters say they will seek $20 million annually from someone, somewhere. Its business model is unrealistic. Its governing structure unworkable. And worse, it doesn’t meet the urgent need to find places for people with the lowest incomes to live.

Voters should reject I-135.

At a time when hundreds of millions of public dollars are being spent on housing across the state — and Seattle voters will be asked in November to approve a renewal of the Housing Levy that could approach $900 million — I-135 is a distraction at best, a money-pit at worst.

The business model aims to build housing for tenants including those earning 20% more than median income, defined as $120,907 for a family of four.

But most housing analyses indicate the greatest need is for those with no or very little income.

The fine print of I-135, which includes requirements that ban evictions if a tenant’s income changes, likely means the Social Housing Developer won’t get private financing, and local government will be on the hook for capital and operating expenses.

It’s a risky bet not worth the benefit.

Say no to I-135.

Read our previous editorial.