As California slid deeper into the housing crisis from 2015 to 2017, a state agency let $2.7 billion in bond capacity that could have been used to build affordable housing expire, according to a report from the state auditor’s office.
The blistering report, released this week, states that the bonds could have been used by developers to help build thousands more affordable housing units statewide.
State Auditor Elaine Howle said the bond allocations were mismanaged in part because California doesn’t have a clear plan on how to best use available funding for housing projects.
“In fact, the absence of a comprehensive and coordinated plan allowed the mismanagement and ultimate waste of $2.7 billion in bond resources to occur with little scrutiny,” her report states.
Auditors said the bonds expired due to mismanagement at the California Debt Limit Allocation Committee, an agency under the state Treasurer’s Office, which allocates tax-exempt federal bond authority to help private developers build affordable housing and other infrastructure projects that have a public benefit.