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MANAGEMENT UPDATE.

SAN FRANCISCO STANDS ALONE (AND NOT IN A GOOD WAY)

California, a state notoriously beset with a shortage of affordable housing, and a resultant rise in homelessness, passed a law last fall, SB423, that provides the state with the power to eliminate many of the hurdles that can stand in the way of meeting state-mandated housing quotas. The goal was to cut the average time for approvals from a couple of years to under six months. 


On Friday, June 28th, San Francisco had the dubious privilege of becoming the first city in the state for which these new streamlining injunctions are to be used. This occurred when the California Department of Housing and Community Development determined that San Francisco hadn’t met its housing permitting goals in 2023. 


The city will now be obligated to process applications for new housing within 180 days. As things stand now, this takes a dismal 26 months, making it the longest approval process in the state.



According to an article in the San Francisco Chronicle, “San Francisco being subject to SB423 means that most proposed housing projects will not require approval from the Planning Commission and therefore won’t be able to be appealed to the Board of  Supervisors. Most projects won’t have to undergo extensive environmental reviews”.


In addition, the city will now be subject to increased oversight to help ensure that it is making progress toward the mandated goals. As the San Francisco Planning Department explains, the bill requires the city to report compliance with the state’s goals in 2024 instead of 2026, as is the case with all the other cities in the state. 


The bill was sponsored by State Senator Scott Wiener, who proclaimed in a July 1 press release that “A confusing and overgrown permitting process has been throttling housing construction in San Francisco for decades. Cutting that process short by years is a massive step forward to building the homes we need to tackle our housing crisis.”


In fairness to the city, it’s worthwhile pointing out that the protracted approval process isn’t the only reason why San Francisco has such a severe housing crunch. “Soaring construction costs and elevated interest rates have combined to make most projects economic non-starters while the city’s hollowed-out downtown and inability to bounce back from the pandemic’s shift to remote work has made San Francisco a risky proposition for most lenders and developers,” reported the Chronicle.


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MANAGEMENT UPDATE ARCHIVES.

VOICES FROM THE GFOA EPISODE 2

VOICES FROM THE GFOA EPISODE 1

SAN FRANCISCO STANDS ALONE AND NOT IN A GOOD WAY

HOW YOUR CITY CAN IMPROVE ITS DATA USE

PREPPING FOR NEW OVERTIME RULES

BUDGET GAMES TO PAY FOR EDUCATION

THE SAD STATE OF ILLINOIS BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS

RETAINING POLICE AND FIREFIGHTERS WITH PENSIONS

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