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Assemblymember Alvarez Introduces Legislation that could lead to more Affordable Housing by using the Builder's Remedy

For immediate release:

Sacramento, CA - Assemblymember David Alvarez (D – San Diego) introduced Assembly Bill 1886 to clarify the intent of the Builder's Remedy by specifying that if a City or County fails to comply with State housing law as determined by the California Department of Housing and Community Development a housing project can be accelerated with limited restrictions.


“Despite the current Builder's Remedy law, the lack of clarity has stopped projects in cities that don’t want to plan or build housing. This leads to California’s potential to make a significant difference in solving the housing crisis,” said Assemblymember David Alvarez. “The bill aims to resolve this problem by clarifying that HCD’s decision will activate the Builder’s Remedy for developers and prohibit cities from using their zoning codes to deny a housing project.”


In 1990, the Builder's Remedy was added to the Housing Accountability Act. It aimed to discourage cities from failing to build and meet the housing needs of their residents. However, for thirty years, use of the Builder's Remedy has been infrequent. The Builder’s Remedy allows homebuilders to move their housing projects with less red tape such as discretionary actions by local governments. These housing projects must include 20% of affordable housing units. There are several pending lawsuits due to the lack of action taken by cities to plan and build needed housing.


"State housing element law exists to ensure there is a sufficient supply of properly zoned sites for residential development in jurisdictions across the state to accommodate the various housing needs of our population over time. To solve our housing affordability and availability crisis, it is critical that all cities and counties follow the law and timely adopt housing elements that are certified by the California Department of Housing and Community Development. In fact, the state takes this process so seriously that the housing element is the only element of the general plan that must be reviewed and certified for compliance by the state. AB 1886 is a good government measure to clarify when a local housing element shall be considered to be in substantial compliance with state law and we thank Assemblymember Alvarez for bringing it forward." Michael Lane, State Policy Director – SPUR


“California is facing a severe housing crisis, and the only way to tackle it is by ramping up housing construction. AB 1886 aims to fortify builders' ability to combat NIMBYism and streamline the housing approval process by making the Builder Remedy process work more effectively. With this legislation in place, delays will be minimized, and the homebuilding process will become more predictable in California. The California Building Industry Association (CBIA) commends Assemblymember Alvarez for taking the lead in authoring and introducing this crucial pro-housing legislation” California Building Industry Association Quote




The 80th Assembly District includes the communities of Barrio Logan, Logan Heights, Sherman Heights, Lincoln Acres, Bonita, Otay Mesa and San Ysidro, along with the cities of Chula Vista, National City and Imperial Beach.