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  • Archive for May 5th, 2017

    May 5


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    Kudos to our allies at the California Building Industry Association (CBIA) – the past six months have seen two big victories in the housing column – first the passage of the school construction bonds by the voters of California in November and most recently stopping the legislative effort to make all new housing construction in California be built at prevailing wage costs. Both of these are positive steps to creating more affordable housing in our state.

    May 5


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    We don’t share a lot of op/eds by California politicians, but this one by Assemblymember Raul Bocanegra (D-San Fernando) just seems to make a lot of sense so thought we’d share:

    For years, economists, business leaders and policymakers warned that the decline in blue-collar manufacturing jobs in California would leave us with a shrinking middle class, limited economic mobility and a plethora of social ills traditionally equated with systemic poverty.

    A recent report by the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation demonstrates that those warnings have become a reality.

    Since 2007, the loss of our manufacturing base has cost Los Angeles nearly 89,000 good-paying middle-class jobs. Those jobs have been replaced with service-sector jobs that pay less than half of the jobs they replaced. At the same time, Los Angeles County has seen poverty rates climb, the middle class shrink, housing affordability grow beyond the grasp of working people, and homelessness hit crisis proportions. Our “middle class” is slipping away into a world of haves and have-nots.

    Even more troubling is the clear racial and ethnic components of the growing class divide. As we become more racially diverse, we are also becoming more segregated by class. Latinos have emerged as the largest ethnic group in California at precisely

    Click here to read the full op/ed.

    May 5


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    Well, you know how the saying goes.  SB 584 by California Senate President pro Tem Kevin de León implies that you can do a lot more to save and reduce Global Warming. A day after releasing a plan that would make California’s cap-and-trade program even less appealing to market-based solutions, Democrats in the Senate are introduced a proposal that calls for 100 percent of the retail electricity sold in the state to come from renewable energy sources by the end of 2045.

    Requiring all of the State’s energy come from less efficient sources such as wind and solar means your bill will go up.

    But wait, there’s more…

    In addition to upping the total amount needed, the bill also shortens the timelines to hit interim targets along the way that became law under de Leon’s Senate Bill 350 in 2015. That bill dictated that 50 percent of California electricity must come from renewable sources by the end of 2030, which the proposal bumps up five years to the end of 2025.  That bill also dictates that existing buildings in California (as a whole) must become twice as energy efficient.

    Many worry that all the “savings” you and/or your tenants purportedly get by investing in energy efficiency is simply getting re-directed to higher cost energy and that all of this is hitting small businesses that can least afford it the most.

    May 5


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    We are happy to report that the Dual Agency Ban Bill, AB 1059 (Gonzalez Fletcher), has been pulled from the Assembly Judiciary Committee docket and we have been told by the author’s staff that she will not pursue the measure further right now (but that it may be revisited over the Interim Recess or next year).  This is great news and we appreciate the fact that Ms. Gonzalez Fletcher has chosen not to move forward with this bill.

    Right now is a good time to breathe a sigh of relief, and take stock of where we are on the issue – but we want to be clear that the war is not necessarily over.  However, we can assume the sponsors of this bill will likely continue to press this issue and we should work to communicate about the benefits of dual agency with policymakers, clients, and the public at large.

    On this bill, we saw a mobilization of our industry unlike any we have seen in several years.  In a coordinated effort through the CBPA office in Sacramento, local chapters of NAIOP, BOMA, AIR and members of ICSC and individual members of CBPA across the state worked quickly to educate our own members and potential allies about the negative impacts of the bill and shared our concerns with Assemblymembers and their staff.

    And to find a positive in the midst of a storm, this was actually a great opportunity for our industry to work with legislators and their staffs and discuss the differences between residential and commercial transactions and why the State treats them separately in statute and how Dual Agency was being mischaracterized by the sponsor of the bill.  This type of education is very important and helps lay positive groundwork and builds trust for success on other commercial real estate issues.

    We will continue to watch for activity in the Legislature while working with local chapters, associations, and companies to provide a “roadmap” to continued education of policymakers and the public about our industry.  But this bill may come back early next year and we need to be ready.

    Until then, thank you to the hundreds of companies and individuals that stepped up to meet this threat to our industry.

    May 5


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    Our industry is part of a coalition that strongly supports AB 600 (Cooper; D-Elk Grove) and SB 600 (Galgiani; D-Stockton) two bills that encourage manufacturing investment in California by extending the existing partial Sales and Use Tax Exemption (STE) creating a more powerful incentive for manufacturing and R&D investments in California.

    These bills build upon the 2013 Governor’s Economic Development Initiative (GEDI) to encourage manufacturing investment and job creation in California. Extending the STE provides greater certainty that California is committed to manufacturing industry growth and promotes higher levels of investment.

    California manufacturing is critical to the overall economy because manufacturers create high-paying jobs that help mitigate the growing income inequality that exists in California and helps rebuild the middle-class. In 2016, the average manufacturing wage was $86,000 annually, well in excess of the state overall average wage of $62,000. As California attracts more manufacturing jobs to the state, the middle-class grows, communities are strengthened and state tax revenue grows from all sources.

    Both bills face a big test in committee next week and we will be there to support them!

    May 5


    Posted by CBPA | No Comments

    We are very pleased to report productive conversations with Senator Wiener (D-San Francisco) regarding his SB 71, a bill that is looking to better enable adoption of solar in residential and commercial settings.  Although this early version of the bill gives some of our members heartburn because it seems to unintentionally undermine the codes process in order to mandate solar in statute, through communications with Senator Wiener and his staff, we are hopeful our issues can be addressed.

    Strict solar requirements are heading our way. This is California, after all.  So addressing some policy issues ahead of time is a priority for our industry and we are pleased Senator Weiner is engaging in such a thoughtful manner.