Berman Introduces Legislation to Boost Affordable Housing Supply

For immediate release:

SACRAMENTO - Today Assemblymember Marc Berman (D-Menlo Park) announced that he has introduced two bills, AB 2006 and AB 2063, focused on addressing barriers to the production of affordable housing. These bills support the state’s goals to provide more affordable housing opportunities for Californians.  

“California has a dire shortage of affordable housing,” said Assemblymember Berman. “These two common-sense bills will remove barriers that delay critically needed affordable housing production. The limited resources of our local affordable housing providers should be spent housing our most vulnerable neighbors, not filing unnecessarily duplicative paperwork with multiple state agencies or being spent on fees that prevent affordable housing from being built.”

AB 2006 would sreamline the state’s affordable housing compliance process, modernizing an unnecessarily burdensome bureaucratic process. The Legislature has been working for years to accelerate production and increase the efficiency of the affordable housing finance system. Housing providers today are required to report to up to three different state agencies—often at the same time, usually in different formats—on everything from the physical state of their units to their operating budgets. AB 2006, sponsored by the California Housing Consortium and the California Housing Partnership, will finally simplify this process, directing the state to identify one entity responsible for compliance monitoring.

“This common-sense legislation will make the work of the state and affordable housing providers easier and more efficient, while helping focus resources where they should be: On providing safe, affordable housing for our residents,” said Ray Pearl, Executive Director of the California Housing Consortium.

“By streamlining the oversight currently handled by multiple state housing agencies, this smart bill will make it less expensive and time-consuming for the state’s private sector partners to provide affordable homes for those in need,” said Matt Schwartz, President and CEO of the California Housing Partnership.

AB 2063 will address another barrier to affordable housing production and strengthen the state’s longstanding density bonus law by prohibiting cities from imposing affordable housing fees on density bonus units. The intention of the California State Density Bonus was to incentivize building more onsite affordable housing. However, tacking on additional fees undermines the intent of this law and can prevent desperately needed affordable housing from actually getting built.

“To alleviate California's housing affordability crisis it's essential to make it faster and easier to build more affordable homes,” said Todd David, Executive Director of Housing Action Coalition. “While our state density bonus program is an effective way to incentivize building more onsite affordable housing, some cities have sought to undermine it by imposing undue fees that make it financially infeasible and result in no new affordable housing being created. That’s why the Housing Action Coalition is proud to sponsor AB 2063 with Assemblymember Berman to ensure that such fees can no longer hinder the creation of affordable homes that residents so desperately need.”

 

To learn more about AB 2006, click here. To learn more about AB 2063, click here.

Contact: Isabelle LaSalle, 916-319-2024