2019 Bills to Watch
A flood of housing bills in the state legislature would block or limit local control of housing development. Among the most concerning:
Override local planning near major transit stops – or in any “job-rich” housing area based on “proximity to jobs, high area median income and high-quality public schools.”
Coalition Impact Analysis Link
Coalition Action Link
Streamline approval process for small multi-family housing projects in cities and counties with unmet housing needs. Allow apartment and condo development up to one story taller than existing height limits within a half-mile of transit stations.
Prohibit moratoriums and other restrictions on housing construction in cities with high rents and low vacancy rates.
Override city ordinances that require a minimum lot size for Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs or “granny units”) or restrict those units to less than 800 square feet.
Allow separate sale/transfer of ADUs built by qualified nonprofits, laying groundwork for splitting lots zoned for single family residences.
Impose new restrictions on housing for high-income jurisdictions. At least 80% of zoning for above moderate-income housing has to be multi-family–an attack on single family zoning.
Designate “high opportunity/low-density” housing communities (e.g., single-family) where developers could more easily build affordable apartment and condo complexes.
Creates a regional unelected taxing agency to raise $1.5B annually for construction of 35,000 homes a year – requiring an additional $1B/year from state and local measures.
SB-50 Planning and zoning: housing development: equitable communities incentive. – Link
This bill is the 2019 version of SB-827 which failed last year due to broad statewide objection
Existing law, known as the Density Bonus Law, requires, when an applicant proposes a housing development within the jurisdiction of a local government, that the city, county, or city and county provide the developer with a density bonus and other incentives or concessions for the production of lower income housing units or for the donation of land within the development if the developer, among other things, agrees to construct a specified percentage of units for very low, low-, or moderate-income households or qualifying residents.
This bill would require a city, county, or city and county to grant upon request an equitable communities incentive when a development proponent seeks and agrees to construct a residential development, as defined, that satisfies specified criteria, including, among other things, that the residential development is either a job-rich housing project or a transit-rich housing project, as those terms are defined; the site does not contain, or has not contained, housing occupied by tenants or accommodations withdrawn from rent or lease in accordance with specified law within specified time periods; and the residential development complies with specified additional requirements under existing law. The bill would require that a residential development eligible for an equitable communities incentive receive waivers from maximum controls on density and automobile parking requirements greater than 0.5 parking spots per unit, up to 3 additional incentives or concessions under the Density Bonus Law, and specified additional waivers if the residential development is located within a 1/2-mile or 1/4-mile radius of a major transit stop, as defined. The bill would authorize a local government to modify or expand the terms of an equitable communities incentive, provided that the equitable communities incentive is consistent with these provisions.
The bill would include findings that the changes proposed by this bill address a matter of statewide concern rather than a municipal affair and, therefore, apply to all cities, including charter cities. The bill would also declare the intent of the Legislature to delay implementation of this bill in sensitive communities, as defined, until July 1, 2020, as provided.
By adding to the duties of local planning officials, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.