Lawmakers Pass Bill Aimed at Trying to Stop L.A. Councilmembers From Blocking Homeless Housing Developments

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Los Angeles City Hall is seen in a file photo. (Credit: Bob Carey / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles City Hall is seen in a file photo. (Credit: Bob Carey / Los Angeles Times)

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California lawmakers took aim at how the city of Los Angeles approves homeless housing projects Wednesday night.

Legislators passed Assembly Bill 829, which tries to stop Los Angeles’ practice of allowing City Council members to quietly block homeless housing developments in their districts prior to a formal vote.

“We cannot allow one local elected official to unilaterally stop projects that will house people and address our homelessness crisis,” Assemblyman David Chiu (D-San Francisco), the bill’s author, said in a statement. “Local elected officials will continue to have significant input in the planning process, but they will not have a pocket veto to deny supportive housing projects.”

AB 829 was inspired by Los Angeles Times coverage earlier this year of city rules that require councilmembers to provide a “letter of acknowledgment” if a homeless project in their district wants to tap funding from Proposition HHH, a $1.2-billion housing bond.

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