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Bill Speeding Up Affordable and Homeless Housing Construction Passes the Senate Housing Committee Unanimously

For immediate release:

(Sacramento, CA) Following passage of AB 785 (sponsored by Mayor Karen Bass) through the Senate Housing Committee with a unanimous vote, bill author Assembly Member Miguel Santiago (D-Los Angeles) released the following statement:

Assemblymember Santiago discussing AB 785

“The latest homeless count results confirm what we already know — homelessness here in Los Angeles is an urgent emergency and we must move immediately to house the people living on our streets,” said Assembly Member Santiago.

“Expediting affordable housing, permanent supportive housing, shelters, and transitioning housing for youth in Los Angeles will reduce the number of people becoming homeless and connect people currently experiencing homelessness to essential services. We need to remove all barriers and speed up all our efforts to put a roof over every head in Los Angeles.”

According to the 2023 homeless count, there are over 75,000 people experiencing homelessness on any given night in LA County and over 46,000 people experiencing homelessness in the city of LA.

AB 785 passed the Assembly and now passed its first committee in the State Senate. AB 785 responds to the homeless crisis in Los Angeles by exempting, until 2030, from the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) any activity approved by the City of Los Angeles in the city, and the County of Los Angeles in the unincorporated areas of the county, in furtherance of providing affordable housing, emergency shelters, supportive housing, or transitional housing. Mayor Bass is a sponsor of AB 785 and supporters of the bill include homeless advocates such as the Downtown Women’s Center.

AB 785 will be heard next in the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Assembly Member Miguel Santiago is the Chair of the Assembly Committee on Governmental Organization. He also sits on the Assembly Committees on Public Safety, Health, HigherEducation and Utilities and Energy. He represents the 54th District composed of the cities of Los Angeles, Commerce, Montebello, and Vernon.