Policy & Legislation

Legislation We've Supported

SB 50 - The MORE Homes Act

Senate Bill 50 would have allowed for building housing near key job centers and public transportation and includes strong protections against displacement for renters and vulnerable communities in those areas.

Learn more here.

AB 68 - Legalize ADUs Statewide

AB 68 legalized the widespread construction of “Granny Flats,” or Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs), as easy-to-build affordable housing. By removing the barriers to constructing these affordable homes, AB 68 created a pathway for 1.8 million new homes.

Learn more here.

AB 725 - Missing Middle Housing

AB 725 requires local governments to plan for small, naturally affordable homes as a part of their regional housing mix. It calls for 25 percent of moderate-income and above-moderate-income housing to be located in areas where multi-family housing is legal, rather than in single-family zones where housing is more expensive. We should support these more naturally-affordable housing types and AB 725.

Learn more here.

AB 3182 - Stop HOAs from Banning Renters

AB 3182 makes it legal for homeowners whose properties are in a homeowner’s association (HOA) to rent their homes out. Approximately 25 percent of all housing in California is in an HOA, but under current law, HOA’s can legally ban renters — dramatically reducing the amount of rental housing available. AB 3182 makes it legal to rent in an HOA, and will expand the amount of rental housing available to renters at all income levels.

Learn more here.

SB 1120 - Fourplexes Statewide

SB 1120 would allow two homes on every property zoned for single-family homes in California. It would also allow single-family properties to be split into two lots, increasing the total potential to four homes (two primary residences and two ADUs). The bill could lead to a substantial increase in the amount of housing available in neighborhoods throughout the state.

Learn more here.

SB 330 - Prohibit Downzoning and Moratoriums

SB 330 prohibits local jurisdictions from enacting new laws that would have the effect of reducing the legal limit on new housing within their borders or delay new housing via administrative or other regulatory barriers.

Learn more here.

Proposition 15 - Schools & Communities First

Proposition 15 closes $12 billion in tax loopholes for wealthy corporations across the state, and designates the funds for essential local services in every county, including our schools, health care services, housing for the homeless, firefighters, safe drinking water, and disaster preparedness. The measure exempts homeowners, renters, small businesses and agricultural land, and prioritizes transparency and accountability by requiring public disclosure of all new revenues and how they are spent.

Learn more here.

Proposition 16 - Return of Racial Equity in Policy-Making

Proposition 16 would amend the California Constitution to allow the state to enact programs that can help correct historic inequities like racial discrimination in housing, in the workplace, and in educational institutions. If voters approve Proposition 16 to repeal Prop 209, the Legislature could reinstate programs such as Affirmative Action. We believe that such policies are needed to allow the state to address racial inequities across a broad swath of California public policy, including housing.

You can read our letter supporting ACA 5 here.

AB 881 - Technical ADU Fixes

AB 881 solves many technical barriers homeowners face while trying to build an ADU on their property. In combination with AB 68, this bill paved the way for roughly 1.8 million new ADUs.

Learn more here.

AB 2923 - Allow BART to Build Housing

AB 2923 makes it legal for the Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART) to build multi-family, mixed-income housing on its parking lots and other land it owns throughout the Bay Area. The bill is expected to produce over 20,000 new homes — 7,000 of which will be affordable to lower-income residents.

Learn more here.

ACA 1 - Affordable Housing and Public Infrastructure

ACA 1 is a proposed California Constitutional amendment on the 2020 ballot that would make it legal for a 55% majority of voters in a city to approve new funding for affordable housing and other vital urban infrastructure. Currently, efforts to raise new funds for affordable housing must be approved by 67% of voters — a threshold that is unreasonably high. The law would have made a huge difference in places like  San Jose, Santa Rosa, and Santa Cruz, which in November 2018 tried — and failed — to pass housing bonds to support local affordable housing. Had ACA 1 been law at the time, each bond would have passed. ACA 1 would make it easier for cities across California to build more low-income housing.
You can read our letter supporting ACA 1 here.

SCA 1 - Public housing projects

SCA-1 is a proposed California Constitutional amendment on the 2020 ballot that would repeal Article 34 of the California State Constitution. Article 34 requires a local government to hold an election every time a low rent building is built with 51 percent or more of government funds. Being able to vote on whether one will have low-income neighbors is inherently exclusionary, and it is morally reprehensible that California still requires this. We applaud SCA 1 for proposing to fully repeal this provision, and we look forward to mobilizing for its passage at the ballot box.
You can read our full letter of support for SCA 1 here.  

Housing Reports from the California Legislative Analyst’s Office:

Perspectives on Helping Low-Income Californians Afford Housing 

California’s High Housing Costs: Causes and Consequences

Do Communities Adequately Plan for Housing?

Considering Changes to Streamline Local Housing Approvals

Housing Scholarship:

The New Exclusionary Zoning By John Mangin (2014)

Regulation and the High Cost of Housing in California By John Quigley and Steven Raphael (2005)

Do Strict Land Use Regulations Make Metropolitan Areas More Segregated by Income? By Michael C. Lens & Paavo Monkkonen (2016)

The Effect of Density Zoning on Racial Segregation in U.S. Urban Areas By Jonathan Rothwell and Douglas S. Massey (2009)

Why is Manhattan So Expensive? Regulation and the Rise in Housing Prices By Edward L. Glaeser and Joseph Gyourko (2009)

Producing Affordable Housing in Rising Markets: What Works? By Lance Freeman and Jenny Schuetz (2016)

Does Luxury Housing Construction Increase Nearby Rents? By Evan Mast (2018)

Affordable Housing Primer By Shane Philips (2020)

Research Catalog:

Our research catalog is an ever-growing list of academic papers. While we do not endorse the papers on this list and this list is not exhaustive, it can certainly be used to better understand the causes and solutions to our housing crisis. Check it out here: cayimby.org/research