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Opinion: California Should Pass Aggressive Housing Reform – News

In response to a recent column in the OC Register that called affordable housing efforts a “disincentive” to hard work, Roberto Barragan, executive director of the California Community Economic Development Association (CCEDA),  argues that that mindset is “an insult to the many who are struggling to keep their small businesses afloat, working full-time, paying college debt, and raising children.” Barragan writes that all people “should be able to live in safe neighborhoods with access to good schools, parks, and transit,” a goal increasingly unattainable in a state with a median home price of over $700,000.

Reforming housing laws, writes Barragan, is one way to make housing more affordable for more Californians, yet “opponents of housing reform would have us believe that any action to make housing more affordable and accessible is wrong and damaging.” Decades of single-family zoning and other exclusionary policies have led to rising inequality. Proposed bills such as Senate Bills 9 and 10 “are intended to increase housing affordability by increasing the overall housing supply and creating equitable conditions for hard-working Californians.” These “relatively modest” proposals, writes Barragan, won’t “mean that everyone gets to live in Malibu,” but could help more households live near jobs, reliable transit, and good schools.

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