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Beginning next year, property management firms and other California employers will want to take a close look at the questions they ask of prospective hires. Under a pair of bills signed by Gov. Jerry Brown, some types of questions will be off-limits during certain portions of the hiring process. With AB 1008 by Assemblyman Kevin McCarty, D-Sacramento, it will be illegal for an employer with five or more employees to include on an employment application any question seeking disclosure of an applicant’s criminal history. The bill also will bar employers from asking an applicant about any convictions until the employer… Read More

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Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill that aims to ensure tenants know about any flood risk to residential property they are considering to rent. Under AB 646 by Assemblyman Ash Kalra, D-San Jose, a landlord with “actual knowledge” that his or her property is in a flood-hazard area will have to disclose this information to prospective tenants. Property owners with actual knowledge include those notified by a government agency, as well as owners required to carry flood insurance for the property. Under AB 646, the owner will have to make this disclosure in the rental agreement beginning July 1,… Read More

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Gov. Jerry Brown on Oct. 5 signed a bill that would crack down on rental property owners who discriminate against tenants based on immigration status. Under AB 291, dubbed the Immigrant Tenant Protection Act, a landlord could face civil penalties if he or she attempts to influence a tenant to vacate the  dwelling unit or attempts to recover possession of the dwelling unit based on the individual’s immigration status. The legislation, by Assemblyman David Chiu, D-San Francisco, offers protections against eviction for tenants whose landlords demand to see Social Security numbers or other validating documents after the landlord previously approved… Read More

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A highly anticipated package of housing bills signed by the governor last week includes key legislation sponsored by the California Apartment Association. Gov. Jerry Brown signed the slate of 15 housing bills Sept. 29 during a ceremony in San Francisco. Important to this package are CAA-sponsored AB 678 by Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra, and a companion bill, SB 167 by Sen. Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley. These bills will help boost California’s supply of housing, which has long lagged behind job and population growth. The legislation adds much-needed teeth to California’s Housing Accountability Act, financially penalizing local governments that arbitrarily deny housing projects… Read More

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After a month-long summer recess, California lawmakers are back in Sacramento and working with Gov. Jerry Brown on a package of bills intended to help fix the state’s housing crisis. The legislative package, which includes a trio of bills sponsored by the California Apartment Association, seeks to remove regulatory hurdles to residential development — a key to fixing the state’s jobs-to-housing imbalance. The package also seeks ongoing funding sources for affordable housing programs, including a bond measure and fee on certain real estate transactions. Much is at stake for the rental housing industry. If California fails to build enough housing… Read More

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In 2017, solving California’s housing crisis remained a top goal of the state Legislature. The result? More than 130 housing-related bills in the first half of the year. The California Apartment Association’s Legislative Steering Committee examined each of these proposals —  and CAA’s public affairs staff helped advance the best of them. Here are some notable examples of 2017 bills intended to solve California’s housing crisis and the status of each: Making sure communities build their fair share of housing AB 678 by Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra, D-San Fernando, would financially penalize local governments that deny housing permits in violation of… Read More

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Although they’re just beginning their summer recess, California lawmakers already have a clear priority for when they return to the Capitol on Aug. 21 — finishing work on hundreds of housing-related bills. Those bills include a trio of housing-production proposals sponsored by the California Apartment Association, which are included within the affordable housing bills being urged by Gov. Jerry Brown and lawmakers. “The package of legislation we are all working on will help ensure Californians won’t have to pay an arm and a leg to have a roof over their head,” Brown said in a joint statement with Senate President… Read More

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A Berkeley radio talk show Tuesday morning highlighted a CAA-sponsored bill that would make it more difficult to pass certain no-growth measures at the ballot box. The talk show, KPFA’s UpFront, featured the bill’s author, Assemblyman Miguel Santiago, D-Los Angeles. AB 943, sponsored by the California Apartment Association, would raise the voter threshold for approving local, citizen-driven no-growth ballot measures in large cities and counties. It is among a trio of bills sponsored by CAA this year to increase the development of housing and help alleviate California’s housing shortage. “When you take a look at the issue of housing, it… Read More

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A CAA-sponsored bill that would boost construction of micro apartments — especially in areas near public university campuses and public transit — has passed the Senate Committee on Governance and Finance. The bill, AB 352  by Assemblyman Miguel Santiago, D-Los Angeles, next headed to the Senate Appropriations Committee. The legislation would help prevent local governments from establishing roadblocks to “efficiency dwelling units,” which usually measure 220 square feet or less. “Due to their small size, they are affordable by design,” CAA writes of these apartments in a letter supporting the bill. “They help reduce sprawl because more housing units can… Read More

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A bill heading to the Assembly floor would create a streamlined approval process for housing in cities that are not meeting their housing goals. SB 35 by Sen. Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, on Wednesday passed the Assembly Committee on Local Government and is now in the Assembly Rules Committee. “SB 35 will make it easier and faster to build housing throughout California and will stop the obstruction of housing that is all too common in California,” Wiener has said in a news release. Under SB 35, cities lagging behind their housing goals would need to streamline the developmental review process… Read More

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