On March 27, Senator Monique Limón held a press conference to introduce Senate Bill 584: The Laborforce Housing Fund alongside the State Building and Construction Trades Council of California. This bill will establish an ongoing funding source for local governments to create needed low-income and middle-income housing units across California.
Specifically The Laborforce Housing Fund would assess a percentage on short-term rentals to fund the construction and acquisition or rehabilitation of affordable and middle-income housing units that will be owned and managed by a public entity, or mission-driven nonprofit. This housing will consist of both new construction and properties needing upgrades to be safe and comfortable for use.
“Over the last few years we have made strides to add new housing units to the market, but we have not been able to create enough middle and low-income housing. It has been made clear that in order for all of our local governments to meet housing targets we need a consistent, budget proof funding source that will ensure our cities can meet our housing goals,” said Senator Limón. “The Laborforce Housing Fund is an innovative solution to one of our state’s most persistent problems. Thank you to the State Building and Construction Trades Council of California for joining me in this effort. I look forward to working with stakeholders to address funding needs for this growing crisis.”
While California has doubled its housing production in the last three years, local governments have expressed the need for ongoing funding to meet Califonia’s housing goals. Currently, the state is only funding 16% of what it needs to meet its housing production targets.
“For far too long, California has prioritized solutions for solving the affordable housing crisis that haven’t moved the needle. We believe the root problem of this crisis is a lack of direct funding to get affordable housing projects off the ground. SB 584 is a real solution, providing a funding mechanism that will bring dollars into local communities to build affordable housing that isn’t held back by profit margins. The construction of these projects will drive growth in local apprenticeship programs around the state, maximizing the value of every dollar generated under this bill. We applaud Senator Limón for her willingness to embrace real solutions to solving California’s housing crisis that also embrace high road career pathways for construction workers,” said State Building and Construction Trades Council of California President, Andrew Meredith.
In 2021 Governor Newsom called for a strong collaboration across sectors to build more housing for all Californians. The Laborforce Housing Fund would capitalize on the strong tourism economy of the Golden State to fund needed housing for all Californians.