It All Adds Up, The Cost of Housing Development Fees in Seven California Cities

Development fees—which cities levy to pay for services needed to build new housing or to offset the impacts of growth on the community—make up a significant portion of the cost to build new housing in California cities. On average, these fees continue to rise, while nationally fees have decreased. As the supply of housing in […]

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It’s pricey to live in Southern California — here’s the proof

The Economic Policy Institute’s latest Family Budget Calculator shows that a family of two adults and two children in L.A. County need to earn $7,691 a month, or $92,295 a year, to meet all of its living expenses. That outstrips L.A. County’s median family income, which is just $66,203 per year, according to the U.S. […]

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Dan Walters: How would California’s next governor face the housing crisis?

Some of the candidates want even higher levels of construction. Newsom and Villaraigosa have talked about building 500,000 new units a year to attack the backlog of unmet needs. But that would mean coming up with $200 billion a year in construction funding. As last year’s housing finance legislation demonstrated, state and local governments can […]

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Who’s Really to Blame for OC’s Housing Affordability Crisis?

So who’s to blame? Homebuilders — in an industry that has fueled California’s economy for more than half a century — are as eager as ever to build the American Dream in the Golden State. But here’s the problem: lawmakers, regulators, local governments and anti-development activists — who already own their own home — won’t […]

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“Strategic Misrepresentation” to Get Voters’ Money

Unfortunately, cost overruns on government projects are hardly a new phenomenon. According to a CATO Institute paper, as far back as 1836, a congressional Ways and Means Committee examination found that 25 out of 25 federal projects suffered a cost overrun. The paper included other interesting items such as the construction of the Erie Canal […]

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LOCAL TAXES: San Francisco Parcel Tax to Fund Teacher Pay Increases Makes Ballot

The proposed tax increase, dubbed the “Living Wage for Educators Act of 2018” by supporters, would impose an annual $298 parcel tax, increased annually for inflation, for 30 years. The cost for each property owner would be $8,940 if the rate remained at $298 for the entire 30 years, but the cost is likely to […]

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New fees proposed to pay for California’s contaminated water problem

As part of his final budget proposal, Gov. Jerry Brown wants new fees on water to provide clean and affordable drinking water to the approximately 1 million Californians who are exposed to contaminated water in their homes and communities each year. The fund would pay for short- and long-term improvements to water infrastructure and help […]

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Opinion: California’s housing crisis and the density delusion

Once seen as a human-scale alternative to the crowded cities of the past, California’s cities are targeted by policy makers and planners dreaming of bringing back the “good old days,” circa 1900, when most people in the largest cities lived in small, cramped apartments. This move is being fronted by well-funded YIMBYs (“yes in my […]

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Stat of the Week: $150,000 added to every new home

That’s the estimated cost of city fees tacked onto each new single-family home in Fremont. The Terner Center for Housing Innovation at the University of California, Berkeley, compared housing development fees in seven cities: Berkeley, Oakland, Fremont, Los Angeles, Irvine, Sacramento and Roseville. Fremont topped for both single-family homes and for multifamily units at about […]

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