California Cities Struggle to Meet New Housing Planning Guidelines

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A worker stands on the roof of a home under construction at a new housing development on November 17, 2016 in San Rafael, California. (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Every eight years, the state goes through a process to determine how much and what kind of housing should be built in every California city. The allotment, known as the Regional Housing Needs Assessment, is up for renewal this year and has called for cities to plan for more housing than in the past. Historically, most cities don’t build the housing the state recommends, and dozens have already filed lawsuits fighting the numbers. RHNA only tells cities how much housing they should plan for, but doesn’t require them to approve housing projects or ensure that the housing is actually. We’ll talk about this year’s assessment process and why the vast majority of cities fall short of the state’s goals. 


J.K. Dineen, Bay Area housing reporter, San Francisco Chronicle

Jesse Arreguin, Mayor, City of Berkeley and president, Association of Bay Area Governments

Shajuti Hossain, lawyer, Public Advocates, a nonprofit law firm and advocacy organization that challenges the systemic causes of poverty and racial discrimination

Chris Elmendorf, professor, University of California, Davis, School of Law