Because they usually require less regulation and construction review, some parts of California are experiencing growth — about one in six of all new units permitted in the state are ADUs.
These residences are especially popular in San Diego because of the city’s unique rule that allows landlords to build a second “bonus” ADU unit for each one they build, as long as the first unit is reserved for of low-income tenants. In parts of the city without close public transportation, a property may have as many as five units. And while there are some limitations, for landlords with property in “transit priority” areas, they can build affordable and bonus ADUs many times.
This led to San Diego’s ambitious ADU projects — with some units built on top of each other and resembling full-fledged apartment complexes rather than custom cottages or traditional “granny flats.” Currently, the largest proposed project in the city includes 148 units.
There is talk of building more ADUs across the state. But critics worry that landlords aren’t actually making them affordable. They also argue that residences are changing the character of neighborhoods and are wary of the casual approach to the regulation of ADUs. As one co-founder of a San Diego neighborhood group once said, “Don’t call them ‘accessories’ when they’re dominant.”
For more on how ADUs are shaping the state’s housing market, read Ben’s story.
Speaking of the housing crisis: Governor Gavin Newsom announced Monday that the state will provide nearly $300 million in grants to move 10,000 homeless people from camps to shelters.
Half of the money goes to local efforts – matching local funds and private, nonprofit contributions – and can be spent at their discretion, such as going to subsidized housing or support services. The other half will go to state projects, which is to support CalTrans as it works to clear homeless encampments across the state.
- Newsom, during the press conference: “The public has it. They are tired, I am tired, we are all tired. And people are dying, they are suffering in the streets, on the sidewalks. So we have to act and that means we have to act with ideas, not just idealism.
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Other Stories You Should Know
Giving without being scammed
After the shopping-centric Black Friday and Cyber Monday comes Giving Tuesday – a day when people can relieve their consumer guilt and spend some of their disposable income to help various causes, charities and volunteer programs.
(A little fun fact: Giving Tuesday began more than 10 years ago in a historic New York community center.)
To commemorate the day, state Attorney General Rob Bonta and his staff volunteered at the Downtown Women’s Center in Los Angeles on Monday. He also held a press conference to remind people to donate wisely and avoid holiday scams.
- Bounta: “Before writing a check, pulling out your credit card or opening PayPal, make sure you do your due diligence to protect yourself from people who might try to take advantage of your generosity…. We’ve learned -on a thing or two about scams and frauds over the years – things we don’t want to see but we have to face the truth and not be naive.
Some donation tips, according to Bonta:
- Charities soliciting donations in California are required to register with the state, so be sure to check their registration status. (And as a personal tip, you can also review Charity Navigator to check a nonprofit’s track record of actually helping people.)
- Don’t fall for aggressive telemarketers who pressure you to donate, and double-check websites when you donate online. Some sites masquerading as legitimate charitable organizations seek to steal your personal information.
- If you have an issue with a charity or fundraising organization, you can submit a report to the Attorney General’s office.
In a corresponding press release, Bonta’s office also warned charities that “participating in fraudulent fundraising practices” are liable to be investigated and punished.
The presidential primary has different rules
California’s March 5 primary is more than three months away, so the Secretary of State’s office has published its draft official voter information guide.
Until December 11, you have the opportunity to provide feedback on the guide, which includes information on what’s on the ballot, plus statements from six political parties and several candidates (for full and unexpired terms of the US Senate).
But here’s an election fact that’s a little hard to find: You can’t vote in the Republican primary for president unless you’re registered with the GOP.
The state party will have a “closed” presidential primary on Super Tuesday, meaning that 22% of California’s registered voters who do not have a party preference will not be able to participate. (As of October, Republicans made up 24% of registered voters and 47% of Democrats)
That is another reason that, apart from some insurmountable legal obstacles, former President Donald Trump is the favorite of the possibilities. The state party has already greased the skids for Trump, changing the rules so he only needs 50% plus one statewide vote to win all 169 California delegates at the Republican National Convention.
The Green and Peace and Freedom parties also held closed presidential primaries.
On the Democratic side, unaffiliated voters are welcomed in a primary where President Biden is seeking re-election and is expected to cruise to renomination, barring unexpected events. The American Independent and Libertarian parties also do not allow party preference voters. But you must request a ballot that includes the presidential race.
Under California’s top-two primary, the US Senate, congressional and legislative races are open to all voters. And the top two finishers, regardless of party, will proceed to the November general election.
CalMatters columnist Dan Walters: While regulating consumer prices can protect the public, it can also boost the finances of large companies.
Gov. vetoed Newsom is a bill that should public schools to provide free condoms to students, but access is important for contraceptive equity and the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases, writes Ria Babaria, a UCLA student and legislative director of Generation Up, and Martin Orea, a high school senior and youth ambassador with the YHES 4 Condoms Campaign.