Help City oppose overreaching housing bills that will impact our quality of life
The City of Mission Viejo opposes state housing bills SB 9 and SB 10. Both high-density housing bills do not guarantee that affordable housing units will be built to address the affordable housing shortage and would also strip control of zoning and development decisions away from local jurisdictions – including Mission Viejo.
To help stop the bills from becoming laws, the City is urging residents to contact State Assembly Members to relay their opposition to SB 9 and SB 10 – bills that will forever change the character of all California cities and affect the health and safety of everyone.
SB 9 outlaws single-family neighborhoods – permits construction of up to 8 units on every single-family lot in the state regardless of local zoning; destroys existing communities for millions of California families and deprives millions of others of the American dream of owning their own home. If SB9 were approved, it would allow two units within each single-family lot in our City without a hearing or environmental reviews. This bill already passed in the State Senate and is part of the committee hearing process in the Assembly.
SB 10 is similar, allowing localities to rezone any land in so-called transit centers and jobs hubs for the construction of up to 14 market-rate apartments per parcel. Other important reasons for opposing such bills are summarized in this flier.
It is essential for residents to contact these State Assembly Members now and request a NO vote on SB 9 and SB 10.
Senate Bill 10 (SB10) violates:
• CA Constitution (Art. II, Sec. 10(c)) & principles of democracy & true local control by allowing local govts (ie a majority of the current or future City Council) to upzone single family residential properties & speed approval for increased density/multi-unit housing without stakeholder involvement & by overriding community-driven local restrictions on adopting zoning ordinances, incl restrictions enacted by voter initiatives
• CA Coastal Act (Publ Res Code §§30000 et seq) by failing to exempt parcels within the Coastal zone & by allowing by-right/expedited approval of development projects with up to 10 dwelling units on properties that are upzoned under the bill, including projects within the Coastal zone which require discretionary review under the Coastal Act
• CA Environmental Qual Act (Publ Res Code §§ 21065 & 21080) & shortcuts required CEQA review by declaring preemptively that an ordinance by a local govt to upzone a single family residential property pursuant to the bill is not a “project” under CEQA, without consideration of whether the ordinance in a given case is “capable of causing a direct or reasonably foreseeable indirect change in the environment” (Union of Medical Marijuana Patients, Inc. v. City of San Diego (CA Coastal Comm, Real Party in Interest), (2019) 7 Cal.5th 1171)
• Potentially compromises public safety & may put the lives & property of 1,000s of CA residents in residential areas that are also in the Very High Fire Hazard Severity Zone (VHFHSZ) at risk from incr density by failing to provide for an unconditional exemption from upzoning under the bill for properties in the VHFHSZ.
• Prevents public scrutiny & bypasses democratic process by providing that state agencies alone, without local comm input, identify & maintain a controlling map of so-called “jobs-rich” areas throughout the state for purposes of upzoning single family residential properties.
• Circumvents controlling caselaw by allowing for “spot zoning” by local govts without consideration of whether upzoning a single-family residential property would be of substantial benefit to the public (Foothills Comm Coalit v. County of Orange (2014) 222 Cal.App.4th 1302)
• Fails to address the state’s affordable housing or to further the goal of “ensuring an adequate supply of affordable housing” by not requiring any amount or level of affordable housing in development projects to be built on properties that are upzoned.
No on sb9 and sb10
I oppose the hosing bills that are being proposed. They will make neighborhoods higher density than they are currently and do not address affordability
How will water and electricity be provided for all these new homes? Where will these new residents park their cars? I don't know about your neighborhood, but in mine, very few garages are used for parking cars.
SB9 and SB10 should be opposed. This pandemic crisis showed how density affects the health of individuals. Also the local community ordinances and zoning should be upheld.
Is this another way to erase prop 13? The new units will be at market value rather than prop 13. Surely developers are in on this. What is the impact on building codes? Too many questionable things about this and too little public awareness.
I can understand why the City and many residents oppose these bills, but what is the City doing to address the lack of affordable housing?
Please consider all sides.
From an article in the San Jose Spotlight 8/13/2021 by Ilya Gurin entitled "Gurin: In support of SB 9".
I encourage residents to imagine not how our neighborhoods look today, but how they might look in the future. Many of us take for granted a dichotomy between neighborhoods of single-detached homes, which embody the suburban lifestyle, and neighborhoods of multi-story apartment buildings which are associated with population growth. But what if there was a way to welcome new residents into a suburban neighborhood without destroying its visual appeal? In fact, there is.
Walking around my hometown of Mountain View, I have noticed many homes that look from a distance like any other, but in fact are duplexes or even three- or fourplexes. Many detached homes could, if the law allowed, be rebuilt as duplexes to welcome more residents into our thriving post-pandemic economy. SB 9 would allow up to four units per lot, statewide.
Some will ask: why must we do this? Don’t we have enough people already? Can’t we just ask all those extra people to go live somewhere else? The arguments in favor of allowing “infill” development are many.
First, the altruistic case, which has been covered extensively in the local press, deserves a brief review. In most parts of the country, a couple consisting of a teacher and a police officer is middle-class. Here, they’re hard-pressed to put a roof over their heads, let alone start a family. The plight of manual laborers is even worse: society declared it “essential” that they come to work, but never declared it essential that they have places to live. Despite building more homes in recent years, Mountain View now has 2.5 times as many jobs as households, which is sadly typical for Santa Clara County cities, according to SV@Home.
As a result, prices are now high enough to inflict pain on most home-seekers across the board. According to Santa Clara County data, a median household needs more than 10 full years of income to buy a house, before accounting for interest.
In 2016—before the latest price increases—out of the 290,000 households in the county below the median income, 29% paid more than 50% of their income for housing. A further 37% either paid more than 30% of their income for housing or were overcrowded with more than one person per room. This situation results directly from a long history of racially-motivated policies, which are described in detail in Richard Rothstein’s “The Color of Law.”
A common reply points out, accurately, that recently built apartments cost more than older ones, and claims inaccurately that building more will only further increase average prices. In fact, the housing shortage gives market power to landlords, who have their pick of wealthy tenants. Building enough apartments for highly paid engineers will create vacancies in older apartments at prices the middle class can afford.
Strong as the altruistic case is, there are also plenty of arguments that should appeal to those who support property rights, business and a conservative outlook. Zoning rules such as height limits, setbacks, prohibition of lot splits, etc. interfere with your right to do as you please with your home, including tearing it down and building something larger in its place. In practice, few homeowners think of their homes this way. But a little creative thinking reveals real options that should appeal to many homeowners—or would if they were legal.
An older couple whose children have moved away, or a divorced or widowed individual, may find themselves in possession of a three- or four-bedroom house with a large yard. Those rarely-used extra rooms and land all need care and maintenance. Separating one side of the house into a separate unit can provide space for an adult child to “move back home” while maintaining autonomy.
Conversely, younger families may appreciate the possibility to have grandparents next door without the awkwardness of sharing a household. Furthermore, turning an upper level into a separate “stacked” unit can both allow older or disabled homeowners to age in place and provide a guaranteed source of income. Sadly, most cities outlaw these options, which would become legal under SB 9. Accessory dwelling units, aka ADUs or granny flats, are now allowed, which is good, but they have major limitations.
The housing shortage also hurts businesses. Speaking just from my own experience in the tech industry, my company is outsourcing more and more high-wage jobs to Italy—not known for a business-friendly environment—and Taiwan. Despite our world-famous talent pool for high tech, major employers have recently made headlines by moving to other states. Talk about a “tech exodus” may be premature, but expect trends to continue unless housing costs decline.
I oppose SB 9 & 10. They will do nothing to make property more affordable.
I oppose SB 9 and 10! We are already over crowded and our traffic in and around Mission Viejo is a nightmare. This will further add to the problem!
I oppose both bills (Sb 9&10)