Senate Bill 4 by Senator Scott Wiener could drastically affect affordable housing in California. What is SB4, and what does it mean for affordable housing?
Senate Bill 4 would allow 100% affordable housing projects to be built on land owned by religious institutions or nonprofit colleges.
An SB4 project like this could be built even if the zoning wouldn’t usually allow apartments and couldn’t be slowed or blocked by environmental lawsuits. The project would also not require approval from the city council or planning commission.
SB4 could unlock affordable housing opportunities across the state. The private and nonprofit sectors, including faith communities, could be essential in easing the housing crisis. Non-profit and religious institutions often have a great deal of underutilized land that could easily be developed into affordable housing.
There is value for religious institutions as well. Allowing them to build low-income housing on their underused land would better use their property and generate income from the rentals. The bill also applies to nonprofit colleges, who could add affordable housing for employees and students.
You can read up on SB4 for yourself here: https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=202320240SB4
These LA Times articles are very helpful: