The League of Women Voters of California supports State Senate Bills 9 and 10 and Assembly Bill 1401, and we hope you will, too.
The main reasons for our support are:
• Housing affordability. California’s housing crisis is fueled by restrictive zoning. We currently have a statewide housing shortage of approximately 3.5 million homes.
Every year, fewer households earn enough to purchase even an entry-level home. As a result, many renters have no option to enter the housing market and build equity.
• Diversity, equity and inclusion. The legacy of housing discrimination and systemic racism – who had access to what housing and when – is seen in communities across California and the United States.
These bills are positive steps toward giving communities the tools to provide housing opportunities for people of various income levels and backgrounds.
• Climate. Encouraging development near transit and eliminating parking requirements help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and traffic, as does giving people access to housing near where they work.
SB 9 would ease some of the barriers to building smaller homes by streamlining approval of single-family lot splits as well as allowing two units on these newly created lots.
SB 10 would make it easier to build small, multifamily developments by allowing cities to adopt resolutions to rezone neighborhoods for increased density of up to 10 homes per parcel in transit-rich areas or urban infill sites.
AB 1401 would prohibit a local government from imposing or enforcing a minimum parking requirement for developments close to high-quality public transit, decreasing costs
and reducing barriers to building affordable housing.
The bill also encourages developers to install infrastructure for electric vehicles and ride-sharing.
These bills are important steps toward statewide efforts to lower housing costs, create more diverse and equitable communities and reduce pollution.
The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization that encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues and influences public policy through education and advocacy.
For more information, on the state LWV and its stances, visit lwvc.org.
Karin Bricker is president of the Los Altos-Mountain View League of Women Voters. Los Altos resident Sue Russell is a member of the LWV.