California lawmakers attempting to address the state’s housing crisis are taking two approaches. They’re passing bills to subsidize housing for low-income residents and looking to encourage more building.
The state Senate has approved new money for affordable housing, including passing a new fee on real estate documents last week and a housing bond last month.
UC Berkeley housing professor Carol Galante says the measures could add billions of dollars to help low-income residents live in or near the areas where they work. But she says it won’t solve the housing shortage that has driven up prices for everyone.
"You’ve got housing that’s deeply subsidized for the most affordable and you have housing for people who can afford high prices, and there’s nothing in the middle," says Galante.
So lawmakers are also moving proposals to expedite development, but Galante says those measures have too many exemptions for neighborhoods where they’re needed most. A broader proposal from Governor Jerry Brown failed to win lawmakers’ support last year.