With the state Legislature’s intense focus on housing this year, the California Apartment Association has played an unprecedented role in shaping policy at the Capitol.

In the 2015-16 legislative session, CAA lobbied on 126 housing-related bills. While all lobbying activity is important, the Association’s work on the following bills was especially noteworthy:

Seismic retrofit tax credit

AB 2392 by Assemblyman Adrin Nazarian, D-Sherman Oaks, would establish the California Seismic Safety Capital Access Loan Program to assist residential property owners and small business owners in seismically retrofitting residences and small businesses.
Position: Support
Status: Senate Committee on Governance and Finance

ADA lawsuit reform

SB 269 by Sen. Richard Roth, D-Riverside, allows business owners 90 days from the date of an inspection by a state certified inspector to fix violations before being subject to liability. It also protects small businesses from liability for certain violations if the business corrects the violation within 15 days of receiving notice of the potential violation. Further, it creates tax incentives for businesses to correct violations.
Position: Support
Status: Signed into law

Inclusionary housing

AB 2502 by Assemblyman Kevin Mullin, D-South San Francisco, attempted to allow cities and counties to force below-market rate housing in new rental developments. It would have overturned the Palmer v. Los Angeles court decision, which concluded that requiring a percentage of affordable units, or inclusionary housing, in new rental developments violates California’s Costa-Hawkins Act. Costa-Hawkins bans rent control in rental housing built after 1995.
Position: Oppose
Status: Assembly Committee on Local Government

Single-family rentals

When first introduced, AB 2282 Assemblyman by Ian Calederon would have limited the number of single-family home rentals allowed in a given ZIP code. A second version would have required all the single-famly rentals to be registered with the state. Thanks to the lobbying efforts of CAA, the bill does neither.
Position: Neutral
Status: Senate Rules Committee

Bonus density

AB 2501 by Assemblyman Richard Bloom, D-Santa Monica, would make it faster, easier and more economical for developers to obtain density bonuses in exchange for including affordable housing in the developments.
Position: Support — Co-sponsored by CAA
Status: Senate Appropriations Committee

Streamlined permitting

AB 2180 by Assemblyman Philip Ting, D-San Francisco, proposes to expedite the building permit process by shortening the number of days that a local government must take to approve a new housing project.
Position: Support  — Sponsored by CAA
Status: Senate Appropriations Committee

Adding second units

AB 2299 by Assemblyman Richard Bloom, D-Santa Monica, would mandate that local governments allow for the construction of second units on residential lots if those units meet specific standards and would eliminate additional parking standards if the second unit is located within one-half mile of public transportation.
Position: Support  — Sponsored by CAA
Status: Senate Appropriations Committee

Boosted legal power

AB 2584 by Assemblyman Tom Daly, D-Anaheim, would expand the enforcement of the Housing Accountability Act by allowing groups that represent tenants or housing providers — such as CAA — to bring a legal action when a local government fails to comply with the act.
Position: Support  — Sponsored by CAA
Status: Senate floor

Medical marijuana

AB 2300 by Assemblyman Jim Wood, D-Healdsburg, deals with smoking medical marijuana in rental properties. The bill would clarify that owners have the right to prohibit the activity, just as they can ban the smoking of tobacco. The bill does not interfere with a tenant’s ability to consume medical marijuana through alternative means, such as edible cannabis and oils.
Position: Support  — Sponsored by CAA
Status: Senate floor

No mandatory Section 8

SB 1053 by Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, would have forced property owners to rent to Section 8 voucher holders. The bill would have made it unlawful to deny an applicant based on the fact that the applicant receives Section 8 assistance. CAA strongly encourages members who have the resources to accept Section 8 vouchers. Moreover, the Association will continue working with local housing authorities to ensure the program is efficient and effective, enticing more landlords to participate. For several reasons, however, CAA believes that participation among property owners should remain voluntary.
Position: Opposed
Status: Died in Senate Appropriations Committee

For all bills actively lobbied by CAA in 2015 and 2016, click the box below. Note: To access this content, you’ll need to enter your CAA member ID and password.