Senator Wiener’s Bill to Allow More Housing near Public Transportation Stalls in Senate Committee

April 18, 2018

Sacramento–  Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) released the following statement after Senate Bill 827-- his bill to create more housing near public transportation --  failed in the Senate Transportation and Housing Committee:

“While I’m disappointed that Senate Bill 827 won’t be moving forward this year, I’m heartened by the conversation it has started, both with those who support the bill and with critics of the bill. The passion we have seen around this bill is driven by what we are all feeling – that California’s housing costs are unsustainable and our housing policies aren’t working. California needs to get at the heart of our housing shortage, not just work around the edges, or we will become a hollowed out state with no middle class.

I have always known there was a real possibility that SB 827 – like other difficult and impactful bills that have come before – was going to take more than one year. A good recent example is when Governor Jerry Brown, in 2016, proposed legislation to streamline housing approvals, a proposal that was deemed too aggressive by some and didn’t move forward that year. But that proposal served as the foundation for the bill I proposed just a few months later – Senate Bill 35 – which streamlined housing approvals in California. SB 35 owes much of its success to the hard but important conversation that Governor Brown started when he pushed forward a bold housing solution.

Now, my job is to take the conversation started by SB 827, and get to work on developing a proposal that meets the ambitious goals of this bill, while incorporatins what we have learned since we introduced it. I will continue to work with anyone who shares the critical goals of creating more housing for people in California, and I look forward to working in the coming months to develop a strong proposal for next year.

I want to thank all of SB 827’s supporters, as well as my co-authors, Senators Nancy Skinner and Ben Hueso, and Assemblymember Phil Ting. I also want to thank the opponents of the bill who engaged thoughtfully with their criticisms and proposed amendments to work toward solutions.

Of course, this setback doesn’t mean I’m done with housing for the year. I have additional housing bills this year to reform our Regional Housing Needs Assessment process (SB 828) and streamline the approvals of farmworker housing (SB 829). California has a lot of work to do on housing, and we are only just getting started.”