The California State Assembly recently passed AB 1585, which would transfer balances in low- and moderate-income housing funds to local housing agencies to be spent for affordable housing. AB 1585 was introduced in early February by Assembly Members John A. Pérez (D”“Coachella), Tony Atkins (D”“San Diego), Roger Dickinson (D-Sacramento), Jerry Hill (D”“San Mateo), Holly Mitchell (D”“Los Angeles), Henry Perea (D”“Fresno), and Norma Torres (D”“Pomona). A law that was passed last year dissolved California’s state redevelopment agencies (RDAs) effective February 1, 2012 and forced RDAs to repay enforceable obligations and transfer remaining low and moderate-income funds to successor local government agencies, which could then be used for other purposes. AB 1585 would modify the scope of this the term “enforceable obligation” and would allow amounts remaining in a RDA housing funds to be transferred to specified local housing agencies to be used specifically for affordable housing purposes. The bill provides an incentive for local governments to allocate the housing funds relatively quickly: 80 percent of the money must be committed within two years and spent within four years. Funds that remain uncommitted after four years would then be transferred to the state Department of Housing and Community Development for use on low-income housing programs in the county from which they came.

AB 1585 was approved by the Assembly, 56-7, receiving two more votes than the supermajority required for passage as an urgency measure. The measure will now head to the Senate, and if successful there, will be sent to the Governor for his consideration.

Click here to read AB 1585.