|(May 3, 2019, 8:25 a.m.) -- Following-up on LBREPORT.com's detailed continuing coverage of Sacramento's neighborhood-impactful SB 50 (overrides aspects of local single family home zoning to enable and incentivize increased density), the bill's newly amended text has now appeared on the state legislature's website here. (The amendments follow an April 24 Assembly Committee meeting reported by LBREPORT.com here.)
On May 2, CityWatchLA.com published an article by former Los Angeles city planner Dick Platkin (a former Los Angeles city planner now a boardmember of United Neighborhoods for Los Angeles) analyzing/commenting on SB 50's recent amendments at this link. His lead sentence: "The legislation is complex, even though its essence is clear. If adopted, it would accelerate the construction of tall, dense, luxury rental apartments throughout the entire State of California, including Los Angeles. It puts Wall Street into your Backyard (WIMBY), whether you live in an apartment or a house, by exempting most local land use decisions from zoning, planning, and environmental laws." And Mr. Platkin's piece proceeds to list what he describes as "the grisly section-by-section details of the bill's most recent amendments."
[Scroll down for further.]
To date, the City of Long Beach has taken no official position SB 50 (introduced Dec. 3, 2018) despite the City Council's November 2018 vote to approve a 2019 City of Long Beach "state legislative agenda" (general policies on Sacramento legislation) that included "Oppose legislation that would reduce the City's local land use authority" and "Oppose legislation that preempts the City's existing control over local matters."
On December 14, 2018, LB Councilwoman Lena Gonzalez announced her candidacy for a vacated LB-S.E. L.A. County state Senate seat. She's been endorsed by LB Mayor Garcia and SB 50 author Senator Wiener and Councilman Rex Richardson serves as Gonzalez's state Senate campaign chair.
Councilwoman Mungo was a member of the state legislation committee until the latter half of 2018, when Mayor Garcia replaced her with Councilman Richardson. Mungo endorsed Gonzalez for state Senate run in the initial multi-candidate March election (now headed for a June 4 runoff with vote by mail ballots flying starting May 6.) To our knowledge, Councilman Austin (who also sought the state Senate seat but ended campaigning in late January 2019) has made no endorsement in the race.
With the City of LB and its Mayor and Council publicly mum, on April 2, 2019 LB-area state Senator Tom Umberg (D, SE LB [908015/90803]) voted "yes" on SB 50 in the state Senate Housing Committee, which advanced SB 50 to the April 24 Governance/Finance Committee which has now advanced it further.
On April 16, the Los Angeles City Council voted 12-0 to oppose SB 50 (unless amended to exclude Los Angeles). A few days earlier, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors (SF's City Council) voted by a super-majority to reverse support for SB 50 voiced by SF's Mayor.
At the April 24 state Senate Governance and Finance Committee meeting, state Senate Majority Leader Bob Hertzberg (D, Los Angeles-SFV) criticized SB 50, and while supporting Governor Gavin Newsom's housing plans, Sen. Hertzberg cited the L.A. City Council's voted opposition in casting his vote to oppose the bill. (Committee vote was 6-1-1 to advance SB 50 to the state Senate Appropriations Committee (for state budget impacts), one vote from a full state Senate vote.
On April 29, 8th dist. Councilman Al Austin (chairs state legislation committee) and 5th dist. Councilwoman Stacy Mungo (formerly a member of that committee) co-agendized a
Density is an especially sore point in Long Beach, where 1980's City Hall pro-developer policies enabled "crackerbox" apartment density in single-family home neighborhoods surrounding downtown. The result left a number of LB neighborhoods with chronic issues (including parking.) LB's experience with "crackerbox" density was among the reasons for grassroots LB neighborhood opposition to increased density proposed by LB city staff in 2017-2018 Land Use Element changes.
The May 7, 2019 agenda item to oppose SB 50 can be adopted with a majority of a quorum (minimum five) Councilmembers present. That means, if only five Councilmembers were present when the item is called, the item could carry on a 4-1 or even 3-2 vote.
If it carries, it would be subject to a possible veto by Mayor Garcia, subject to a Council voted override. If the Council's voted action is to adopt a resolution, six Council votes would be needed to override a Mayoral veto. If the Council's voted action is to simply adopt a "minute order," the Council could override a veto with only 2/3 of Councilmembers "present."
In a Sunday April 28 Facebook comment, Senator Wiener noted that a New York Times editorial has endorsed SB 50:
In advance of the April 24 Assembly Committee meeting, the Senate's Governance and Finance Committee's legislative analysis listed support and opposition as of April 19 as follows:
Developing...with further to follow on LBREPORT.com
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