Article 34 of the State Constitution requires a local government to obtain voter approval in order to develop, construct, or acquire certain low-income rental housing units. Article 34 authority is required for every project where more than 50 percent of units are restricted for low-income households. In 2008, the voters of the City of Los Angeles approved a ballot measure authorizing and maintaining a level of 3,500 units of low-income housing per Council District, for an aggregate total of 52,500 units of low-income housing within the City of Los Angeles. The Los Angeles Housing Department reports that the current level of Article 34 authority is insufficient to address homelessness and meet the City’s affordable housing needs.
Since 1969, the State of California has required that all cities and counties adequately plan to meet the housing needs of communities through a Housing Element. The Housing Element is a required part of every local government’s General Plan, must be updated every eight years, and must comply with standards and requirements set by the State. The City’s 2021-2029 Housing Element, as required by State law, sets a goal that the City provide 185,000 affordable housing units for low- and very low-income households by 2029. Increasing the City’s current total Article 34 authority would allow for increased development of low- and very low-income housing and support the City’s efforts in achieving the 2021-2029 Housing Element’s goal.
This measure would authorize public entities in the City to develop, construct, or acquire an additional 5,000 units of low-income rental housing in each Council District, for an additional potential 75,000 units Citywide. This would provide an aggregate total of 127,500 units of low-income housing within the City of Los Angeles, subject to funding availability and City development requirements.
Voter approval of the additional Article 34 authority does not require or guarantee that the authorized number of units will be developed, constructed, or acquired by the City or other public entities, nor obligate the provision of additional funding for such purposes, or exempt such projects from the public review or other development processes required by the City.
This measure would increase the number of units of low-income rental housing that public entities could develop, construct, or acquire in the City of Los Angeles by 5,000 per City Council district. Article XXXIV of the California State Constitution requires voter approval for these activities. In 2008, voters approved a level of 3,500 units per district and this measure would increase that level to 8,500. A small number of districts are approaching the 3,500 level.
Source: City Attorney's Impartial Analysis of Measure LH