Speaking to a room full of rental housing VIPs, Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins reiterated her commitment to advancing housing-supply legislation this year and praised the California Apartment Association for its leadership role at the Capitol.

“The Legislature and the California Apartment Association have a great relationship,” said Atkins, a Democrat from San Diego. “And my colleagues and I are truly appreciative of the work that you do, and the perspective, frankly, that you bring to policy actions and directions from the state.”

Her comments came during the California Apartment Association’s Leadership Dinner the night before the February board meeting.

“Housing is one of the biggest issues, if not the biggest issue, facing our state,” Atkins said. “And we’re in the midst of a multi-year effort to try and seriously address the crisis.”

The senator thanked CAA for supporting SB 50, saying that while the housing-density bill failed to pass, it did keep the conversation going about housing in California.

Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, speaks to rental housing VIPs at CAA’s Leadership Dinner on Feb. 19 in Sacramento.

“We need a housing-production bill that includes consensus solutions, so that we can help actually solve our housing-affordability crisis,” she said, adding: “We have to get this done. And I think we will, especially with the support of folks like you, of groups like you. You are invested and you know what it means for residents and businesses in our state.”

The Senate leader also thanked CAA for its work educating its membership about AB 1482, the statewide rent control and just-cause eviction law that took effect Jan. 1.

Atkins criticized efforts to put another rent control measure on the statewide ballot in November, saying it would undermine AB 1482.

“Your thoughtful approach to critical issues is what makes you successful. It’s why you and your leadership are respected and looked to as a major voice in the Capitol,” Atkins said. “Your voice is successful because you seek to find solutions. … I know that we have a lot to accomplish on the supply side of housing. And I really look forward to addressing the crisis with partners like you, because we tell each other the truth, we work through the hard points, and we get to where we need to go.”