The “Housing Crisis Act of 2019” is heading to Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desk, seeking to boost homebuilding in “urbanized” zones throughout the state, according to the bill’s author, state Sen. Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley.
The bill won final (very last minute) passage Friday, Sept. 6, with business backing but over the objections of the League of California Cities and 56 cities & counties.
Newsom has indicated he would sign the measure.
Senate Bill 330, which received scant news coverage, would ban population and housing caps in “urban clusters,” ban housing construction moratoriums, forbid density reductions and allow demolition of affordable and rent-controlled housing only if the demolished units are replaced.
It also includes anti-displacement provisions, requiring relocation assistance to tenants forced to move from affordable rental units & allowing them to stay in their homes until 6 months before construction begins.
It also blocks local governments from changing the rules on pending developments by hiking fees or changing permit requirements once a project applicant has submitted preliminary development plans.
Much of the state’s needed housing has already been planned by local communities, Skinner’s statement said.
One UCLA study shows local governments have approved zoning for 2.8 million new housing units. That’s 80% of Newsom’s goal to build 3.5 million new units by 2025.
Opposition wasn’t that strong, and nobody spoke against the bill before Friday’s lopsided votes to pass it. The Assembly passed the Housing Crisis Act 67-8, and the Senate voted 30-4 in the bill’s favor.