California cities that are falling behind on housing production goals set by the state would be forced to remove some of their development restrictions under legislation from a Bay Area state senator.
State Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) released new details in his bill, SB 35, Monday morning that would require cities to approve new housing in areas already zoned for high-density development provided developers set aside some units for low-income residents. The bill’s provisions would only apply in cities where growth isn’t keeping pace with housing production targets developed by the state every eight years that are designed to ensure California has enough homes for its growing population to live affordably.
Right now, that’s not happening. The state’s median home price of $485,800 is more than 2 1/2 times the national average, with the state’s poorest residents the hardest hit. And in the most recent eight-year housing cycle ending in 2014, production was less than half of the state target.
The bill by Assemblywoman Susan Talamantes Eggman (D-Stockton) would allow defendants without any prior violent offenses or convictions within five years of their arrest to enroll in a drug treatment program for six months to a year before entering a guilty plea.
Courts would have to wipe defendants' charges from their records should they successfully complete the pretrial diversion program. But judges would be required to terminate the treatment and reinstate the criminal proceedings for those offenders who do not perform well.
California's leading Democrats have been talking for two months about what the new president will mean for the state. But an equally important question may be: What will it mean for them?
On this week's California Politics Podcast, we discuss not just the effect of President Trump on state policies but also on how the national debate might influence the early jockeying in the 2018 race for governor.
We also take a closer look at the most significant policy question for California under the Trump administration: The repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
Kevin de León didn't say much during Friday's inauguration ceremony, and neither did most of the staff and supporters gathered to watch it in his Echo Park office Friday.
"A stunned silence," De León said with a half-smile, as Donald Trump took the stage to be sworn in as the nation's 45th president.
Just yesterday, De León, who has quickly placed himself at the front of California's resistance to the Trump administration, had plenty to say. He accused Trump of trying to "seed confusion and chaos," and said the new president's plans for an immigration crackdown were sowing fears among his constituents of "raping and pillaging."
If California wants to hit its goal for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, it has a lot of work to do. That's the inescapable conclusion from a new report released by the Air Resources Board on Friday, which detailed a range of proposals for new regulations.
Legislation signed by Gov. Jerry Brown last year requires the state to slash emissions to 40% below 1990 levels by 2030, which is equivalent to 260 million metric tons.
As the graphic below shows, the law requires California to squeeze into a smaller carbon footprint at the same time its economy and population is expected to grow.
After an election and transition season that was anything but quiet, California lawmakers largely planned to mark Friday's inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump with little public activity.
Gov. Jerry Brown is in Sacramento with plans to privately observe the events in Washington, according to his office. Other prominent elected officials also planned low-key days while Trump and congressional Republicans celebrated in Washington.
Democrats in the state Assembly, meantime, penned what an open "letter to Californians," listing priorities from the environment to welcoming "refugees and immigrants." The letter was also distributed as a video featuring two dozen Assembly Democrats.