CSAC Bulletin Article

Housing, Land Use & Transportation Bills Move to Next House

May 23, 2019

The Senate and Assembly are preparing for longer floor sessions to meet the May 31 deadline for each house to pass bills introduced in their house of origin. While many bills continue to advance, SB 50 (Wiener) and AB 1568 (McCarty) —two of the most contentious housing bills of the year—were held in the Assembly and Senate Appropriations Committees last week and turned into two-year bills. SB 50 would have overridden local zoning standards in areas near transit and in higher-opportunity neighborhoods, while AB 1568 would have prevented counties from receiving state grants if they are not in compliance with certain state housing laws.

While these bills will not continue to move in the current legislative session, they will have another opportunity to do so in January 2020. CSAC held “oppose unless amended” positions on both measures. Letters for SB 50 and AB 1568 are available on the CSAC website. Several other bills have already moved to the next house, while a few others await a vote on the Senate and Assembly Floors.

 

Low-Income Housing Tax Credits

SB 9 (Beall) indefinitely allows a taxpayer that receives a state low-income housing tax credit to elect to sell all or a portion of that credit to one or more unrelated parties for each taxable year in which the credit is allowed. This bill increases the impact of the state’s existing low-income housing tax credit without any additional costs to taxpayers. CSAC holds a support position on this bill, which passed out of the Senate Floor earlier this week and is now in the Assembly. 

AB 10 (Chiu) increases the amount of state Low-Income Housing Tax Credit allocations by an additional $500 million annually. CSAC is in support of this bill, as it will increase the state tax credit allocations and allow California to maximize all federal tax credits. The bill passed out of the Assembly Floor and is currently in the Senate.

 

Accessory Dwelling Units

AB 69 (Ting) requires HCD to propose a small homes building code for homes smaller than 800 square feet to the California Building Standards Commission. Compliance with existing building codes can add proportionately more cost to smaller homes and therefore incentivize construction of larger, more expensive homes by developers. CSAC is in support of this measure. This measure passed out of the Assembly Floor and is now in the Senate.  

AB 671 (Friedman) requires local agencies to adopt, via their housing elements, a plan that incentivizes and promotes the creation of accessory dwelling units that can be offered at rents affordable to lower-income households. CSAC holds a concerns position on this measure and is working with the author’s office to amend this into an opt-in program. The bill is currently on the Assembly Floor. AB 671 passed out of the Assembly Floor and is now in the Senate.

 

Development Impact Fees

SB 13 (Wieckowski) imposes several restrictions on the impact fees that can be charged on an Accessory Dwelling unit. CSAC holds an oppose unless amended position on this measure. The bill passed out of the Senate Floor and is currently in the Assembly.  

AB 1484 (Grayson) requires cities and counties to provide a “good faith” statement of certain development impact fees when an application for a housing development is deemed complete. The bill would also, with exceptions, preclude increases in the specified fees applicable to the housing development for up to two years after the application is deemed complete. CSAC holds a concerns position on this bill and will suggest amendments to align it with the impact fee principles adopted by the Housing, Land Use and Transportation Policy Committee at the Legislative Conference. The bill passed out of the Assembly Floor earlier this week and is now in the Senate.

 

Superseding Local Discretion 

SB 330 (Skinner) makes changes to local approval processes, modifies the Permit Streamlining Act, imposes restrictions on certain types of development standards, and creates separate building standards for occupied substandard buildings. CSAC holds an oppose unless amended position on this measure and has objected to the applicability to counties based on rents charged within cities, the bill’s prior limitations on housing-related impact fees, and the creation of new and unclear processes for the review of applications. The bill is currently on the Senate Floor.

 

AB 1279 (Bloom) creates a state override of local zoning to allow certain qualifying housing developments “by-right” in designated high-opportunity communities with lower residential densities. CSAC holds a concerns position on this measure and hopes to secure amendments that more precisely define applicable areas and create a workable appeals process that promotes local planning. This bill is currently on the Assembly Floor.

 

Surplus Land

AB 1486 (Ting) expands surplus land requirements for both the state and local agencies. CSAC holds an oppose unless amended position on this measure and hopes to better align the reporting and surplus property requirements with existing land use law. The bill is currently on the Assembly Floor.   

 

Transportation

CSAC is the sponsor of SB 137 (Dodd), which allows the state, regions, cities and counties to reduce the cost of transportation projects and provide for more projects to be completed with the same amount of revenue by expanding the existing Match Exchange Program to include eligibility for larger regions and for local safety and bridge projects. The bill is currently on the Senate Floor.

AB 252 (Daly) repeals the sunset date for the State of California’s limited waiver of sovereign immunity, which is necessary to allow the California Department of Transportation to continue its assumption of National Environmental Policy Act responsibilities. CSAC holds a support position on this measure. This bill passed the Assembly Floor and is now in the Senate.

CSAC will continue to monitor these bills as the May 31 deadline for the Senate and Assembly to pass bills introduced in their house of origin approaches.

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