CHC's Industry Insight
A Note from our Executive Director

By now you know that the Governor and legislative leaders have committed to reaching a deal to address our state's affordable housing crisis when the Legislature returns from their recess in late August.
It is only through our collective and relentless work that we have reached this point, pushing the affordable housing agenda so far forward that the Governor and leaders are calling for a general obligation bond and permanent funding source dedicated to affordable housing - goals we have long advocated for to bring relief to families, veterans and seniors struggling to find an affordable place to live.
It is worth noting too that in a time when news cycles come and go seemingly faster than the click of a mouse, still a week after the announcement that an affordable housing deal will be taken up, stories are being written on 
what a housing deal might entail and calls for our primary funding bills - Senate Bill 2 and Senate Bill 3 - are a central piece of the discussion .
The Legislature may be out on recess until August 21 but our work continues. The coming weeks provide some important opportunities to connect with your legislators in their home districts and to help ensure they understand any housing deal must include funding. Visit them in their district offices or introduce yourself when you see them at local events. Strike up a conversation when you run into at the local coffee shop and make it clear:
  • Securing funding is essential to getting affordable homes built in our community for your constituents. We cannot build homes if we do not have funding. No funding means no new affordable homes, which means more homelessness and families, veterans and seniors in shelters or on the streets.
We have an opportunity not only to solidify what must be in the housing deal but also to change the tide on the housing catastrophe that has impacted communities throughout the state for years. Ask your Assembly Member today to join their colleagues and commit to taking action on the housing deal. I know we have all had enough of the talk coming out of Sacramento. Now is the time for action. 


  Ray Pearl 
  CHC Executive Director 
In Case You Missed It...
  • Upcoming legislative deadlines:
    • August 21 - legislators return from summer recess. 
    • September 1 - last day for fiscal committees to meet and report bills to the Floor.
    • September 15 - last day of session.
  • The affordable housing conference season is almost upon us! Join our partners for their annual conferences by following the links below:

  • CHC's 20th Anniversary Celebration will be held on November 16 (details to come).
Federal Update from David Gasson, Boston Capital

I am fresh off a new episode of "Game of Thrones" and the similarity between the intrigue in the Seven Kingdoms and what is happening in Washington, DC is amazing. I will spare you a point by point/character by character analogy but aside from no one in our nation's capital being scorched by dragons, the dysfunction and chaos that is a mainstay of the HBO drama seems to have become the new normal in Washington. 

Since my last report, when we were preparing for the promised vote on the ACA Repeal and Replace, mayhem has arrived in the Senate with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell learning what it has been like for former Speaker John Boehner and current Speaker Paul Ryan who have not always been able to depend on their Republican conferences for votes to pass legislation.  At the time of this update it is unclear if there will be a vote on Repeal and Replace, simple repeal or no vote at all.  This has the President enraged and sending out Ravens, I mean Tweet's targeting members of his own party with scorn and threats. 

With healthcare reform in tatters many are hoping a
move to tax reform might be the salve the majority party in DC needs to finally get a win in their pocket.  A six person working group made up of members of the administration, House and Senate have been meeting for weeks on reform and the President believes reaching an agreement will be easy(ier) compared to healthcare reform.  Yet there remain significant gulfs between the White House, House and Senate on what is doable.  A number of Senate Finance Committee members have told me that their colleagues are not at all enamored with what has been coming out of the House, and the White House expectations are unrealistic.  What appears to be achievable in the end is less tax reform and more likely a tax cut.  They may reach an agreement on some international tax revisions which have bipartisan support, but more than that, especially considering the legislative calendar, seems unlikely.   I caution everyone to not assume tax reform is unachievable as we are living in the political era of expect the impossible.  That being said I remain bullish on the corporate tax rate remaining north of 28% with the likelihood of real tax reform slipping away with the coming of winter. 

What must be addressed by Congress is the FY2018 budget and that is proving equally as difficult to form consensus around.  The House may vote on a budget resolution this week before they depart for their August recess but as of today they are short the 218 votes needed to pass the resolution.  Significant cuts to domestic programs do not have consensus among Republican's, including $1.2 billion in cuts to the Housing Choice Voucher program as well as other cuts to the HUD budget.  Significantly, the House version of THUD funding is $3.5 billion less than the Senate version which we will learn more about at the Senate THUD markup on July 25th.  The significant disparity between House and Senate funding levels do not bode well for an agreement between the two chambers which in the end, could spell trouble for the Republican plan to pass tax reform through the budget reconciliation process. If there is no agreed upon budget, there is no reconciliation. 

As I indicated previously, the House and eventually the Senate will be heading home for the August recess and this is a perfect time to advocate with your Senators and Representatives on behalf of our LIHTC legislation, S. 548 and H.R. 1661 as well as funding of the HUD budget.  You added Congressman Darrell Issa (R-49) to the cosponsor list for H.R. 1661 which is great news but we still have a majority of the CA delegation that has yet to sign-on.  Despite the travails facing tax reform, there are other potential vehicles by which our LIHTC expansion bills can become law so demonstrable support for the legislation is critical.  By all means enjoy the summer and let us know if you have a Member of Congress to a property.  The fall may prove perilous for many legislative priorities but as we have proven in the past, when we bring someone on board as an affordable housing supporter, our housing agenda has traditionally prevailed.  For timely updates and news feel free to follow me on Twitter at @dsgasson.
Thank you.

David Gasson
Remembering Timothy O'Connell, Affordable Housing Advocate

CHC is mourning the loss of Timothy O'Connell a tireless and passionate advocate for social justice . Since the spring of 1999, he served as Director, Policy and Advocacy for Century Housing, and was responsible for representing the interests of Century, its affiliates, partners and clients at the federal, state and local levels, including matters relating to funding, regulation, and oversight. Tim was Century's primary liaison with elected representatives, legislative staff, and administrative officials in his on-going effort to assure that affordable housing and related issues received the necessary legislative and financial support.  

In addition to his service with Century, Tim served on various boards and committees dedicated to increasing the supply of critically needed affordable housing throughout the State of California, including the  California Housing Consortium, the San Diego Housing Foundation, Housing California, Los Angeles Business Council, the California Association of Local Housing Finance Agencies, and LA Family Housing. 

Tim was a longtime advocate of social justice and committed his life in service to others. With his passing, the affordable housing community has lost one of its strongest and most effective voices.
Tim had many interests and causes that he supported throughout his life. Two of his favorites were the public library system (where he was one of their most frequent borrowers) and the educational and social needs of underprivileged children. In recognition of Tim's deep fondness for these causes, the family suggests that any tributes in Tim's memory be made to either of the following:

The Library Foundation of Los Angeles                                                               Oasis Community Center                                                                                               
630 West 5th Street                                                                                              2001 River Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90071                                                                                       Long Beach, CA 90810 

* Information about Tim in this article is from Century Housing
Affordable Housing in the News

After securing the two-thirds supermajority needed to extend California's cap-and-trade program to 2030, Gov. Jerry Brown and Democratic leaders touted their "shared commitment" to reach a deal to address the state's housing crisis. However, if the Legislature does not identify a source of funding for affordable housing, it "hasn't really done anything on housing," Ray Pearl, CHC Executive Director, told the Sacramento Bee, in one of the media outlet's many stories covering what a housing deal might include. "You can't build without funding," he said. "Every day the Legislature doesn't act, this catastrophe gets worse."
Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Times reported that Marin County will continue to limit home building beyond what other regions of California are allowed under affordable housing laws after the Governor signed SB 106 Friday, July 14. San Diego is trying the opposite approach, as the  Times of San Diego covered, with a Housing Action Day that brought together stakeholders from across the region to provide input on the city's housing crisis, support actions to help increase housing supply and make living in the city more affordable. 
Finally, long-time Capitol columnist Dan Walters questions in the Fresno Bee if Californian politicians will really address housing crisis or settle for tokenism. With California building barely enough new housing to handle current population growth and making no dent in a years-long backlog, he opines it will take significant measures for the Legislature to break the local logjams.    
CHC Spotlight on New Development

A 66-unit affordable housing development geared toward veterans and seniors opened last week. Built by Eden Housing,  Valor Crossing -  formerly called Dublin Family Apartments, is located near the Dublin/Pleasanton BART station.  The development will give preference to veterans and their families, seniors and people with disabilities,
and  features 24 one-bedroom units, 20 two-bedroom units and 21 three-bedroom units for those earning between 30 to 60 percent of the local median income. Its amenities include: a community room for events and classes, a technology center, outdoor decks & patio area, playgrounds, & a fitness center.  

A 62-unit permanent supportive housing development serving homeless individuals with special needs opened in San Diego earlier this week. The Cypress Apartments are for residents earning an average of 30 - 40 percent of the area median income (AMI). As a sustainable, transit-oriented development, Cypress pairs the latest urban design with affordability for those who need it the most: the homeless population in San Diego. Shared amenities include a second-level outdoor open space, a community kitchen, tech tables, and lounge areas with abundant natural sunlight. The environmentally-friendly community also has a solar array to offset 60 percent of the common area energy usage, and offers resident services by St. Vincent de Paul Village, Inc.

*If you would like a development listed in CHC's Spotlight on New Development, please contact Andy Russell
CHC would like to thank the sponsors of our 20th Anniversary:

Is your CHC membership current? If you would like to  join CHC or have questions on your membership, please contact  Nancy Martin.  
CHC is a non-partisan advocate for the production and preservation of housing affordable to low- and moderate-income Californians. We represent the development, building, financial, and public sectors united in their goal that every Californian has a safe, affordable place to call home.