The state housing department released its first list showing how many California cities and counties are meeting their local homebuilding goals.
The conclusion: More than 500 local jurisdictions — 98 percent of those in the state — are failing.
As a result, local governments will be required to expedite the approval process for new home developments that include affordable housing units, the California Department of Housing and Community Development announced on Thursday, Feb. 1.
Just 13 local jurisdictions made the list of those that have approved enough housing for all income levels, including sufficient affordable housing. The cities of Beverly Hills, San Fernando and West Hollywood made the list, as did Carpinteria and the San Diego County town of Lemon Grove.
The rest – 526 California cities and counties – either failed to meet their minimum housing goals or have yet to submit their 2016 progress reports, the state report said.
Under Senate Bill 35 — one of 15 new laws approved last year to address California’s housing crisis — developers seeking permits in those jurisdictions can get streamlined approvals, granted without an appearance before city councils and county supervisors, as long as they meet certain conditions.
For example, the housing projects must be adjacent to existing urban areas, meet existing zoning laws and set aside either 10 percent or 50 percent of their new homes for low-income residents.
The law seeks to increase homebuilding in the state by taking the approval process away from local politicians who fail to approve adequate construction.
State reports found local jurisdictions frequently give in to pressure from constituents who flock to city halls and county governments to protest new developments in their neighborhoods. So-called NIMBY’s, or “not in my backyard,” supporters, are reluctant to accept new housing in their communities, particularly affordable housing, fearing it will bring increased traffic, congestion and crime.