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C.A.R. continues legislative successes

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As the 2021-2022 legislative session ended August 31, C.A.R. continued its record of success this year by defeating SB 1105 (Hueso), SB 1026 (Wieckowski) and AB 2383 (Jones-Sawyer), none of which will be moving forward this year.

SB 1105 sought to grant vast taxing and bonding authority to an unelected Housing Agency Board in San Diego. C.A.R. does not oppose housing agencies per se, but this agency would have paid for its housing initiatives with taxes that would have affected and increased the cost of buying and holding property. The Board could have imposed or put on the ballot, if required by law, several special taxes on real property. Taxing housing to pay for other housing makes no sense and would increase the already high costs of housing, making it more expensive for homeowners to keep their property in a challenging economic environment and make the properties less affordable to purchase. As the state emerged from the pandemic with a $97 billion state surplus, the Legislature agreed that solving California’s housing problems should not be placed on working Californians struggling to stay afloat and keep their homes in a tough economic environment.

SB 1026 would have created a burdensome energy-efficiency audit process that would have been required to be performed for each rental unit every time a unit is rented. Specifically, the bill’s author sought to require housing providers determine the energy efficiency of appliances and heating systems, as well as door, wall, ceiling and floor insulation. Housing providers are not energy-efficiency experts and, as a result, they would have been forced to seek costly professional assistance every time they rented a unit to accurately report the energy efficiency of each aspect of the unit.

AB 2383 would have, among other things, imposed onerous requirements on housing providers by requiring they provide an extensive written statement to an applicant if the applicant’s criminal history information is used as the basis for possible denial. The written statement would have been required to include copious amounts of information, including the applicable law providing the basis for each conviction. Most housing providers are not lawyers so they would have no practical way of providing all of this detailed information.

C.A.R., over the course of several months, provided feedback regarding practical implementation concerns with both SB 1026 and AB 2383. However, that feedback was rejected. Consequently, C.A.R. was forced to oppose both bills, which would have increased costs and liability on small housing providers during a pandemic, as well as made it more difficult for prospective tenants to secure housing.

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