How will the State Package of Housing Bills Impact the Baylands?
California’s severe housing shortage has reached extreme levels. According to a recent McKinsey report, for every 1,000 residents California has gained since the 1970s, it has produced only 325 homes. For this reason, the State legislature opened the year by pushing 130 housing bills to address the housing affordability crisis. However, Governor Brown has stated many times that he will not support additional funding for affordable housing without legislation to reform the approvals process for housing development proposals. Governor Brown committed to finalizing a housing package once the Legislature returned from summer recess, which ended August 21st. Read a brief summary of the bills under consideration at the San Francisco Housing Action Coalition blog.
One bill that will impact local land use decision is SB35, introduced by Senator Scott Wiener. The legislation would require cities to adopt a streamlining ordinance for approving housing if they are not meeting their Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA), the assigned number of housing units to each city and county that must be planned for in an eight-year cycle. Projects eligible for streamlined approvals must meet certain criteria, including prevailing wage and affordable housing requirements.
SB35 effectively enforces cities into compliance to the RHNA policy that, currently, has no legal teeth. Were it to become law, Brisbane would have to address it’s shortfall of 210 units from it’s 2007-2014 planning cycle. However, Brisbane’s Parkside Plan, a mixed-use proposal for the downtown area, includes 230 housing units and therefore wouldn’t be subject to SB35. Furthermore, the legislation only applies to areas zoned for residential. Since Brisbane’s 1994 General Plan doesn’t allow for housing on the Baylands, SB35 wouldn’t apply to the Brisbane Baylands proposal.
We encourage you to reach out to the Council and ask them to please support housing on the Baylands.
Learn more about the various housing bills in this recent Sacramento Bee article.