Redevelopment is Gone. Now What Funds Low Income Housing?

On Wednesday, Kate Klimow, OCBC Vice President of Government Affairs, joined with other housing advocates to testify in support of a permanent source of funding for affordable housing particularly given the demise of redevelopment. The Senate Transportation and Housing Committee held a joint informational hearing with the Senate Governance and Finance Committee entitled “Financing Affordable Housing and Local Economic Development: New Reality, New Opportunity.” Joining OCBC in providing formal testimony were Housing California, California Housing Consortium, State Building and Construction Trades Council of California, California Building Industry Association, City of San Jose, and Silicon Valley Leadership Group.

The HOMeS Act (SB1220), introduced by Sen. Desalnier as one solution, will support the development, acquisition, rehabilitation, and preservation of affordable homes for Californians on fixed incomes and modest budgets, including emergency shelters, transitional and permanent rental housing, foreclosure mitigation, and homeownership opportunities. The bill proposes a $75 document recording fee on real estate transactions, estimated to generate an average of $700 million per year. CLICK HERE for a fact sheet on the bill.

The lack of sufficient, affordable homes near jobs impedes economic growth and development by making it difficult for California employers to attract and retain employees. The decline in housing production has played a significant role in creating and prolonging the Great Recession.

Following the hearing, Senator Mark DeSaulnier and President pro Tem of the Senate Darrell Steinberg, along with principal co-author Assemblymember Toni Atkins, introduced the Housing Opportunity and Market Stabilization (HOMeS) Act (SB 1220) with the goal of creating a permanent funding source for affordable homes in California. SB 1220 is co-sponsored by the California Housing Consortium and Housing California. For more information contact Kate Klimow, Vice President of Government Affairs.

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