AB 989 (Gabriel) has been approved by two Assembly policy committees and faces a key vote soon on the Assembly Floor. Letters of support are needed now to ensure the bill’s passage by the end of May. As a sponsor of the bill, the California Housing Partnership asks that you submit your organization’s letter of support to the Legislature’s Position Letter Portal (with a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org) by May 14. A sample letter is available for download: Word file | PDF file.
While the state’s existing Housing Accountability Act creates a strong legal foundation governing local land use decisions on affordable housing developments, most affordable housing developers are reluctant to go to court to challenge a city or county that violates the law due to the time, expense, and uncertainty. As a result of this lack of enforcement, developers often abandon attempts to build new affordable housing in communities that oppose it or worse, never even try to build there. Ironically, these “NIMBY” communities are most often ones with the best schools and access to jobs and other resources that research shows is critical to helping low-income children thrive.
Based on the long-standing and successful Massachusetts Chapter 40B law, AB 989 creates a state Housing Accountability Committee to adjudicate violations of the Housing Accountability Act and gives it the authority to overturn denials or conditions of approval that are not consistent with the Act. This provides a quicker, less expensive, less confrontational, and more consistent alternative to enforcing state housing laws in court, resulting in more affordable homes built at lower cost.
Your voice makes a difference! Please submit your letter of support for AB 989 soon.
A fact sheet on the bill is available from our website (PDF file). For questions or more information, please contact Director of Legislative and Regulatory Advocacy, Mark Stivers, at email@example.com.