City Leaders React After Governor Concedes Affordable Housing Claims Based on Outdated Research

first_img Community News Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Over the past two years, local leaders have railed against laws passed in Sacramento taking local control away from City Hall to help build more housing.During that time, Gov. Gavin Newsom justified those laws with a claim that the state needed to be 3.5 million affordable housing units to stave off the affordable housing crisis.Last week, Newsom said his repeated claims that the state needs to build 3.5 million homes to be swiftly built were based on a flawed and outdated consultant’s study. New construction goals are being formulated, according to Newsom.“It’s bad for public officials, particularly respected and critical public officials like the governor to put out numbers that are so at odds with what experts would say are more plausible because we have a housing shortage,” Tornek said. “There’s no denying it. It’s a critical problem for the state of California. But to throw a number out that is completely out of line, kind of cheapens the discourse and makes the whole process unrealistic.”Tornek spoke to Pasadena Now on Tuesday, hours before the city’s Legislative Policy Committee discussed the issue, along with SB 50.SB 50 is one of the bills that could further soften local ordinances to allow developers to build apartments near transit lines and raises height limits increasing density in high-income areas. The bill is up for vote this week.If passed that bill passes, it joins a glut of housing bills signed by Gov. Newsom that take power away from local officials.SB 330 puts a five-year moratorium on some local policies that make it harder to build in communities without enough housing.AB 1763 expands the existing state density-bonus law by allowing an 80% density bonus for projects with 100% affordable housing.Housing advocate Jill Shook said that the state still has to build affordable housing to alleviate the crisis.“Whether you agree with Newsom that California needs 3.5 million new units of housing, or 1.5 million, as others have argued, it should be noted that there huge need not just for housing, but for affordable housing,” Shook said. “In our city of Pasadena, for example, we are building far more deluxe units than are needed, and far fewer affordable units than are needed. Reforms like facilitating the building of accessory dwelling units (“granny flats”) are a modest step forward. But what we really need billions in state and federal funding for low-income housing and we need legislation to ensure that a significant percentage of new housing be set aside as affordable. We don’t need 1.5 million more deluxe homes. We need affordable housing for all income levels.”Mayoral Candidate and District 5 Councilman Victor Gordo said the state definitely has a role to play a supporting role, but the people of Pasadena deserve to make decisions.“It’s more evidence of why cities like Pasadena need to play a more prominent role with the issue of housing,” Gordo said. “It’s why we need local control. The state should play a supporting role, encouraging, every local government to do its part, like Pasadena is doing its part. But you know, the state cannot dictate to Pasadena or any other local government. With all due respect to Governor Newsom and the state legislature, they don’t live and experience our cities like we do. This is just another example of where a one size fits all cookie-cutter approach doesn’t work. They’ve got it wrong in the past and it seems they’re getting it wrong again.”Local officials acknowledge the housing and homeless problems, but decry the bills that would give developers more power to overrule existing zoning ordinances.“It damages the trust the public places in lawmakers, which is already in short supply,” said District 6 Candidate and housing advocate Ryan Bell. “Using accurate data doesn’t cost the governor anything.”Bell, like Gordo and Tornek, acknowledged that the state is still in a devastating crisis.“We have a job to do which is to solve the worst homelessness in the nation and protect those who are precariously housed.”Rents in Pasadena are among the highest in the state with many two-bedroom apartments renting above $3,000, making it almost impossible for minimum-wage workers and middle-class residents to afford to live in Pasadena, even as wages increase.Last year, the Pasadena City Council unanimously voted to raise the inclusionary housing requirement for developers to set aside affordable units on all new projects.The old requirement was a 15 percent set aside. The new requirement is to allocate 20 percent of the total number of proposed housing units for moderate- to low-income residents.The amendments were the first changes to the city’s inclusionary housing ordinance since it was adopted in 2001.The original ordinance applied to developments of 10 units or more and called for developers to set aside 15 percent of the proposed units as affordable for very low- and moderate-income people. Developers not wanting to set aside units can still pay an in-lieu fee which goes into the city’s own housing fund. Builders can also donate land worth the value of the fee. Government City Leaders React After Governor Concedes Affordable Housing Claims Based on Outdated Research Flawed data cited during drive to push laws that removes local control By ANDRÉ COLEMAN, Managing Editor and DAVID CROSS Published on Thursday, January 30, 2020 | 5:28 am Make a comment 12 recommendedShareShareTweetSharePin it Business News Community News Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  HerbeautyThe Most Heartwarming Moments Between Father And DaughterHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyTips From A Professional Stylist On How To Look Stunning In 2020HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyAmazing Sparks Of On-Screen Chemistry From The 90-sHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyWhat’s Your Zodiac Flower Sign?HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyShort On Time? 10-Minute Workouts Are Just What You NeedHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyThis Trend Looks Kind Of Cool!HerbeautyHerbeauty EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDScenter_img Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. 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