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Open Access Publications from the University of California

California Can Simplify the Housing Element Law to Reduce Administrative Burdens and Improve Social Equity

  • Author(s): Zheng, Huixin;
  • Marantz, Nicholas J.;
  • Houston, Doug;
  • Kim, Jae Hong
  • et al.

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California’s Housing Element law requires all local governments to adequately plan to meet the state’s existing and future housing needs. The law establishes processes for determining regional housing needs and requires regional councils of governments (COGs) with allocating these housing needs to cities and counties in the form of numerical targets. Local governments must update the housing element of their general plans and adopt policies to accommodate the housing targets. The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) reviews all local housing elements and determines whether the elements comply with state law.

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