Various committees of AIA California recently completed their review of legislation of interest to the profession, and are making recommendations for the AIA CA Board of Directors to consider when it meets on April 16.

More legislation will be reviewed later when amendments add language that more clearly identifies the purpose of the legislation. To date, our committees reviewed 77 legislative bills and are making recommendations on 45 of them.

The committees that reviewed the bills are:

The Advocacy Advisory Committee for general legislation

The Urban Design Committee for legislation affecting urban planning

The Housing Congress and Urban Design Committee for housing legislation

The Committee of the Environment Advocacy Subcommittee for environmental/sustainable design legislation

Here are the recommendations these committees are making to the AIA CA Board of Directors. Let us know what you think.

Advocacy Advisory Committee Recommendations

AB 107 (Salas) Licensure: veterans and military spouses

Require several licensing boards, including the CA Architects Board, to issue a temporary license to an applicant if the applicant is an honorably discharged veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States or is married to, or in a domestic partnership or other legal union with, an active duty member of the Armed Forces of the United States.

AAC RecommendationOppose

Reason for Oppose Recommendation: AAC recommends AIA CA oppose AB 107 unless the requirement to take the CA Supplemental Exam remains unaffected.

AB 1026 (Smith) Business licenses: veterans

Require the Department of Consumer Affairs and any board within the department to grant a 50% fee reduction for an initial license to an applicant who has served as an active duty member of the United States Armed Forces or the California National Guard and was honorably discharged.

AAC Recommendation: Support

AB 1030 (Chen) Professional Land Surveyors’Act and Professional Engineers Act

Expands the scope of practices for engineering and land surveying.

Appears to restrict the ability to employ or contract with engineers and land surveyors.

Strikes from law, in several places, the following

This chapter does not prevent an individual or business engaged in any line of endeavor, other than the practice of (land surveying or engineering) from employing or contracting with a licensed land surveyor or a licensed civil engineer to perform the respective (land surveying or engineering) services incidental to the conduct of business.


AAC Recommendation: Oppose

Reason for Oppose Recommendation: AAC recommends that AIA CA oppose AB 1030 if it is confirmed it restricts the ability of architects to employ or contract with engineers and land surveyors.  AAC recommends there should be no restriction placed on architects employing or contracting with land surveyors or engineers.

AB 965 (Levine) Building Standards: EV Charging Infrastructure

Require the Department of Housing and Community Development and the CA Building Standards Commission, by July 1, 2024, or the publication of the next interim California Building Code, whichever comes first, to research, develop, and propose building standards regarding the installation of future electric vehicle charging infrastructure for parking spaces for existing multifamily dwellings and nonresidential development, as specified. The bill would also require the Department of Housing and Community Development and the commission to review the standards for multifamily dwellings and nonresidential development every 18 months to update the standards as needed pursuant to that review.


AAC Recommendation: Oppose

Reason for Oppose Recommendation: AIA CA traditionally opposes efforts to write building codes and standards by legislation, and instead argues they should be developed in our established regulatory process.  Additionally, a similar bill was vetoed last year and there is no indication this year is different.  In his veto message, the governor wrote:

I agree with the intent of this bill to increase inclusive access to EV charging technology for Californians living in multifamily housing, which is necessary to increase the number of zero emission vehicles on the road.

However, I believe this issue is best addressed administratively in order to balance our charging infrastructure objectives with our efforts to expand affordable housing. Therefore, I am directing the Department of Housing and Community Development to develop and propose a building standard that would increase the availability of EV charging infrastructure at existing multifamily properties, while limiting costs for affordable housing.

AB 62 (Gray) Income Taxes: Credits: Costs to Comply with COVID-19 Regulations

Allow a credit against taxes for each taxable year beginning on or after January 1, 2021, to a qualified taxpayer in an amount equal to the total amount paid or incurred during the taxable year by the qualified taxpayer to comply with the regulations adopted by the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board on November 19, 2020, relating to COVID-19 prevention.

A qualified taxpayer is defined as a small business (less than 200 employees) or an employer of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers.


AAC Recommendation: Support

SB 74 (Borgeas) Keep California Working Act

Creates the Keep California Working Grant Program to award grants to small businesses and non-profits that:

  • Experienced economic hardship from COVID
  • Negatively impacted by COVID, including business interruptions, closures

Defines small businesses as those that emply less than 100 employees, and non-profits as 501 (c)(3) or (c)(6), and that have revenue less than $5million.

Allows grant money to be used for:

  • Employee costs (payroll, health care, paid sick, etc)
  • Working capital
  • Rent
  • Utilities
  • Costs associated with covid safety protocols


AAC Recommendation: Support

AB 411 (Irwin) Veterans Housing and Homeless Prevention Bond Act of 2022

Places a $600 million bond act on the June 2022 ballot to provide housing to veterans and their families.  Construction of housing is an authorized use of the bond funds.


AAC Recommendation: Support

AB 919 (Grayson) Construction Defects: Statute of Limitations

Reduces the statute of limitations for construction defects from 10 to 5 years if the construction project used a “skilled and trained” workforce.


AAC Recommendation: Support

AB 970 (McCarty) EV Charging Stations: Approval of Permit Application

Requires an application to install an EV charging station to be deemed complete after 5 days unless the application is deemed incomplete.

Requires the application to be deemed approved after 15 days if all these conditions are met:

  • The city, county, or city and county has not administratively approved the application through the issuance of a building permit or similar nondiscretionary permit pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 65850.7.
  • The building official of the city, county, or city and county has not made a finding based on substantial evidence that the proposed installation could have a specific, adverse impact upon the public health or safety and required the applicant to apply for a use permit pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 65850.7.
  • If the electric vehicle charging station is being installed in an area that receives electrical service from a local publicly owned electric utility or electrical cooperative, the applicant has obtained all required approvals from the local publicly owned electric utility or electrical cooperative.


AAC RecommendationSupport

SB 617 (Weiner) Residential Solar Energy Systems: Permitting

Require every city and county to implement an online, automated permitting platform that verifies code compliance and instantaneously issues permits for a residential photovoltaic solar energy system and an energy storage system paired with a residential photovoltaic solar energy system.


AAC Recommendation: Oppose

Reason for Oppose Recommendation: The AAC recommends that all local governments should not be mandated to utilize this online platform (believed to be currently offered from one source), and that is should be a choice for building departments.

AB 75 (O’Donnell) K-Community College Facilities Bond Act

Places a K-Community College facilities bond act on a statewide 2022 ballot.  The amount of the bond is not yet specified.

Requires DGS to process applications for funding within 120 days

Allows school districts to receive a supplemental grant to expand an existing or construct a new gymnasium, multipurpose room, library, or school kitchen.


AAC Recommendation: Support

AB 306 (O’Donnell) K-Community College Employee Housing

States that any housing for K-community college employee is not a school building and is not subject to the Field Act.


AAC Recommendaton: Support

SB 22 (Glazer) School Facilities Bond Act

Places a $15 Billion Education Facility bond act on a 2022 statewide election for preschool to colleges.

Increases the local bond capacity of issued local school bonds passed with 55% vote from 1.25 to 2% of taxable property.

For unified and communtiy colleges, increases the local bond capacity of issued local bonds passed with with 2/3% vote, from 2.5 to 4% of taxable property.


AAC Recommendation: Support

AB 1329 (Nazarian) Building Codes: earthquakes: functional recovery standard

Requires the CA Building Standards Commission to develop building standards for new buildings to be designed and built to a functional recovery standard.

Allows locals to adopt more restrictive standards for “recovery-based design standards, based on priorities identified in a local hazard mitigation plan or in the safety element of a general plan.”

Defines functional recovery standard as:

a set of enforceable building code provisions and regulations that provide specific design and construction requirements intended to result in a building for which post-earthquake structural and nonstructural capacity are maintained or can be restored to support the basic intended functions associated with the building’s pre-earthquake use and occupancy within an acceptable time, where the acceptable time might differ for various uses or occupancies.


AAC Recommendation: Support

Urban Design Committee Recommendations


AB 571 (Mayes) Planning and Zoning: Density Bonuses: Affordable Housing

Prohibits affordable impact fees (inclusionary zoning fees, in-lieu fees, and public benefit fees) from being imposed on a housing development’s affordable units or bonus units under the Density Bonus Law.


UDC Recommendation: Support (3-2 Split Vote)

AB 617 (Davies) Regional Housing Needs

Allows local governments to transfer their allocation of housing needs to another local government.


UDC Recommendations: Oppose

Reason for Oppose Recommendation: UDC recommends that all cities and counties need to meet their RHNA numbers through the development of housing within their jurisdictions.

AB 682 (Bloom) Cohousing Buildings

Requires a city or county with a population of more than 400,000 people to permit the building of cohousing buildings in any zone where multifamily residential buildings are permitted. Requires that cohousing buildings be permitted on the same basis as multifamily dwelling units. The bill would set minimum standards for the construction of cohousing buildings, including floor-space ratios and setback requirements. The bill would require some of cohousing buildings be set aside for affordable housing.


UDC Recommendation: Oppose

Reason for Oppose Recommendation: UDC recommends that cohousing needs minimum standards for the living spaces (e.g. storage, refrigeration, open space, etc …).  Without those standards, this bill could require the approval of cohousing that is substandard.


AB 1401 (Friedman) Residential and Commercial Parking Requirements

Prohibits a local government from imposing a minimum parking requirement, or enforcing a minimum parking requirement, on residential, commercial, or other development if the development is located on a parcel that is within one-half mile walking distance of public transit or located within a low-vehicle miles traveled area.


UDC Recommendation: Support

SB 475 (Cortese) Transportation Planning: Sustainable Communities Strategies

Requires the sustainable communities strategy prepared by a metropolitan planning organization, as a part of the regional transportation plan, to include ARB guidelines on sustainable communities strategies, in coordination with CA Transportation Commission and HCD.  Requires the guidelines to be updated at least every 4 years.

Creates the State-Regional Collaborative for Climate, Equity, and Resilience, and assigns tasks.

Requires the CEC to set regional building decarbonization targets for 2030 and 2045.


UDC Recommendation: Support

SB 499 (Leyva) Land Uses Adversely Impacting Health

Prohibits a land use element from designating land uses that have the potential to significantly degrade local air, water, or soil quality or to adversely impact health outcomes in disadvantaged communities or a racially or ethnically concentrated area of poverty.


UDC Recommendation: Support

SB 695 (Ochoa Bogh) Mitigation Fee Act: Housing Developments

Prohibit a local agency from imposing a housing impact requirement adopted by the local agency on a housing development project unless specified requirements are satisfied by the local agency, including that the local agency prepare and adopt a nexus study. The bill, for purposes of these provisions, defines “housing impact requirement” as a fee imposed under the Mitigation Fee Act, dedications of parkland or in-lieu fees imposed under the Quimby Act, or a construction excise tax.  This bill would require a local agency to adopt a nexus study that is used to demonstrate compliance with these provisions, subject to specified public participation requirements.  This bill would prohibit a housing impact requirement from exceeding the amount necessary to maintain the existing level of service identified in the nexus study for the type of capital facility for which the housing impact requirement is imposed.


UDC Recommendation: Oppose

Reason for Oppose Recommendation: The UDC recommends that the description of the required nexus study is too vague and open to interpretation, thus easily opening the imposition of fees to challenge.


SB 809 (Allen) Regional Housing Needs

Allows local governments to adopt and implement multijurisdictional regional agreements to satisfy their obligation to identify zones suitable for residential development.


UDC Recommendation: Oppose

Reason for Oppose Recommendation: UDC recommends that all cities and counties need to meet their RHNA numbers through the development of housing within their jurisdictions.

Urban Design Committee and Housing Congress Recommendations

AB 345 (Quirk-Silva) ADUs: Separate Conveyance

Requires, instead of allows, a local government to allow an ADU to be sold separately from the primary residence if:

  • The ADU or primary dwelling was built or developed by a qualified nonprofit corp
  • There is an enforceable restriction on the use of the land between the buyer and nonprofit
  • The property is held pursuant to a recorded tenancy in common agreement with conditions


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

AB 561 (Ting) ADUs: Financing

Requires the State Treasurer to develop the Help Homeowners Add New Housing Program with the purpose of assisting homeowners in qualifying for loans to construct additional housing units on their property, including accessory dwelling units and junior accessory dwelling units. The additional housing units would be for rent.  Funding would come from revenue bonds.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

SB 765 (Stern) ADUs: Setbacks

Gives local governments more authority to establish ADU setback requirments.

Eliminates existing setback language (more than 4 feet from the side and rear lot lines for an accessory dwelling unit that is not converted from an existing structure or a new structure constructed in the same location and to the same dimensions as an existing structure) and gives local governments the ability to establish setback requirements.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Oppose

Reason for Oppose Recommendation: The UDC/HC group believes this change in law can provide a local jurisdiction that is not favorable to the development of ADUs the ability to establish standards that are difficult to meet, thus in effect stopping the development of ADUs.

AB 115 (Bloom) Housing in Commercial Zone

Allows residential development on land zoned for commercial if:

  • 20% units affordable
  • Not adjacent to industrial use/75% surrounding area urban

Establishes height and density rules for this housing.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

AB 244 (Blanca Rubio) Affordable Housing Cost Study

Requires the California Tax Credit Allocation Committee, the Department of Housing and Community Development, the California Housing Finance Agency, and the California Debt Limit Allocation Committee to conduct an affordable housing cost study that measures the factors that influence the cost of building affordable housing, breaks down total development costs for affordable housing, and enables the state to maximize resources allocated for affordable housing.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

AB 491 (Lorena Gonzalez) Affordable and Market Rate Housing

Requires that a mixed-income multifamily structure that is constructed on or after January 1, 2022, provide the same access to the common entrances, common areas, and amenities of the structure to occupants of the affordable housing units in the structure as is provided to occupants of the market-rate housing units. The bill would also prohibit a mixed-income multifamily structure that is constructed on or after January 1, 2022, from isolating the affordable housing units within the structure to a specific floor or an area on a specific floor.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support if Amended

Recommended Amendment: UDC/HC recommends the date upon which the law applies to new housing should change from “constructed on or after January 1, 2022” to “permit submitted on or after January 1, 2022”.


AB 512 (Holden) Surplus Property

Requires Department Of Transportation to offer to sell specified unimproved property in the cities of LA, Pasadena, and South Pasadena at the original price paid to a housing related entity for affordable housing.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

AB 880 (Aguiar-Curry) Affordable Disaster Housing Revolving Development and Acquisition Program

Creates the Affordable Disaster Housing Revolving Development and Acquisition Program to be established and administered by the Department of Housing and Community Development. The purpose of the program is to fund the predevelopment expenses, acquisition, construction, reconstruction, and rehabilitation of property to develop or preserve affordable housing in the state’s declared disaster areas that have experienced damage and loss of homes occupied by or affecting lower income households.  The program would go into effect upon appropriation of at least $200 million.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

SB 5 (Atkins) Affordable Housing Bond Act

Enacts the Affordable Housing Bond Act and places a $6.5 Billion bond measure on the Nov. 2022 ballot.

The bond revenue would fund affordable rental housing and homeownership programs.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

SB 6 (Caballero) Housing in Commercial Zone

Allows a housing development project on a parcel within an office or retail commercial zone if the parcel is not adjacent to an industrial use.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

SB 8 (Skinner) Housing Crisis Act of 2019

Expands on the definition of “housing development project” in the Housing Crisis Act to include both discretionary and ministerial projects, as well as projects to construct single dwelling units. The bill also says that adding single-family homes to the definition does not affect the interpretation of the scope of the HAA. SB 8 clarifies that the receipt of a density bonus is not a basis for finding a project out of compliance with local zoning rules, and says that this change along with the changes to the definition of housing development project are declaratory of existing law.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

SB 10 (Weiner) Density

Regardless of local restrictions, allows a local government to adopt an ordinance to zone for up to 10 units of residential density per parcel if the parcel is located in one of the following:

  • Transit rich area
  • Jobs rich area
  • Urban infill site


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

SB 12 (McGuire) Planning and Zoning: Wildfires

Imposes certain fire hazard planning responsibilities on local governments and requires cities and counties to make specified findings on fire standards prior to permitting development in very high fire risk areas, which the bill defines to be the very high fire hazard severity zones in both the state and local areas of responsibility.

This is a complex bill.  For more detailed information please see the legislative analysis prepared by the Senate Governance and Finance Committee.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

SB 15 (Portantino) Rezoning of Idle Retail Sites

Requires the Department of Housing and Community Development to administer a program to provide grants to local governments that rezone idle sites used for a big box commercial shopping cernter to instead allow the development of low and moderate income housing.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support with Amendments

Amendments Sought: Allow neighborhood commercial uses on sites as well, and include conditions that the site is not adjacent to an industrial operation, and 75% of surrounding area is urban.

SB 490 (Caballero) Housing Acquisition and Rehabilitation: Technical Assistance

Enacts the Housing Acquisition and Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Program for projects that acquire and preserve unsubsidized housing units and attaching long-term affordability restrictions on the units, and safegaurding against displacing current residents.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

SB 728 (Hertzberg) Purchase of Density Bonus Units by Nonprofit Housing Organziations

Allows affordability under the Density Bonus Law (a density bonus in return for affordable units) to be met by a qualified nonprofit purchasing units with the following conditions:

(I) A repurchase option that requires a subsequent purchaser of the property that desires to resell or convey the property to offer the qualified nonprofit corporation the right to repurchase the property prior to selling or conveying that property to any other purchaser.

(II) An equity sharing agreement.

(III) Affordability restrictions on the sale and conveyance of the property that ensure that the property will be preserved for lower income housing for at least 45 years for owner-occupied housing units and will be sold or resold only to persons or families of very low, low, or moderate income, as defined in Section 50052.5 of the Health and Safety Code.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

SCA 2 (Allen and Wiener) Public Housing Projects

Places a measure on the state ballot to amend the State Constitution to repeal the requirement that voters must approve any development of a low-rent housing project.


UDC/HC Recommendation: Support

COTE Advocacy Subcommittee Recommendations


AB 67 (Petrie-Norris) Sea Level Rise Economic Analysis

Requires state agencies to “take into account the current and future impacts of sea level rise when planning, designing, building, operating, maintaining, and investing in infrastructure located in the coastal zone or otherwise vulnerable to flooding from sea level rise or storm surges, such as airports, rail lines, streets and highways, pipelines, wastewater treatment plants, schools, hospitals, and other facilities, or otherwise approving the allocation of state funds for those purposes.”

Requires the Ocean Protection Council, with others, to provide recommendations to address sea level rise that protect infrastructure listed in the above paragraph and to develop a standardized methodology and template for conducting economic analyses of risks and adaptation strategies associated with sea level rise.


COTE Advocacy Subcommittee Recommendation: Support

AB 1161 (Eduardo Garcia) State Agency Procurement of Renewable Energy

Enacts the Clean Economy and Clean Jobs Stimulus Act of 2021 and would require the Department of Water Resources to procure newly developed eligible renewable energy resources or zero-carbon resources, and energy storage associated with those resources, in an amount that satisfies 100 percent electricity procured to serve all state agencies by December 31, 2030,


COTE Advocacy Subcommittee Recommendation: Support

SB 30 (Cortese) Building Decarbonization

After 1/1/22, prohibits a state agency from planning a new building that is connected to the natural gas grid.

Requires the development of a decarb plan to make all state-owned buildings operational carbo-neutral by 1/1/35.

With limited exception (loss of federal or other funding), prohibits a state agency after 1/1/23 from providing funds or other support for the construction of residential/nonresidential buildings connected to the natural gas grid.


COTE Advocacy Subcommittee Recommendation: Support

SB 31 (Cortese) Building Decarbonization

Requires the CA Energy Commission to implement programs to promote existing and new building decarbonization.

If clean energy funds come from the federal government (COVID/stimulus funds), allows that money to be used for existing and new building decarb (upon appropriation by legislature).

Allows money from the “electric program investment charge” to be awarded for projects that lead to the development and deployment of commercial and residential building decarbonization technologies and investments that reduce or eliminate greenhouse gas generation in those buildings.


COTE Advocacy Subcommittee Recommendation: Support

SB 68 (Becker) Building Decarbonization

Requires the CA Energy Commission to develop and publish on its internet website a guide for electrification of buildings and to submit to the Legislature a report on barriers to electrifying existing buildings and to adding energy storage or vehicle charging equipment to existing buildings.


COTE Advocacy Subcommittee Recommendation: Support

SB 596 (Becker) Greenhouse Gases: Cement and Concrete Production

Requires CA Air Resources Board to develop a comprehensive strategy for California’s cement and concrete sector to reduce the carbon intensity of concrete used within the state by at least 40 percent from 2019 levels by 2030 and to achieve carbon neutrality as soon as possible, but no later than 2045.


COTE Advocacy Subcommittee Recommendation: Support





AIA California
AIA California
Celebrating over 75 years of service, the AIA California actively promotes the value of design and advocates for the architectural profession. AIA CA is an association of 11,000 dedicated and passionate members who share a commitment to design excellence and livability in California’s natural and built environments.

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