Assemblymember Kevin McCarty’s bill to Transition State Buildings to Housing Signed by Governor

For immediate release:

SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Kevin McCarty’s (D-Sacramento) adaptive reuse bill, AB 2592, which will direct the Department of General Services (DGS) to develop a plan to transition underutilized, multistory state buildings into housing, has been signed by Governor Gavin Newsom.

California is in the middle of a housing affordability crisis. One of the leading contributors is the lack of housing supply, paired with the high demand for housing. California simply hasn’t built enough housing to keep up with population growth. According to the Legislative Analyst’s Office, the state needed to have produced an estimated 70,000 to 110,000 additional housing units annually between 1980 and 2021. This has led to a projected 3.5 million-unit shortfall by 2025.

“California’s housing crisis is one of the most challenging issues facing the state,” said Assemblymember Kevin McCarty. “Soaring housing prices make it difficult for many residents to find affordable housing that meets their needs. This bill will help expand housing in California and help residents put a roof over their heads.”

The McKinsey Global Institute found that housing shortages cost California’s economy between $143 and $233 billion annually due to disproportionately high rents and mortgages leading to lower consumer spending.

 “Sacramento was the first city in California to partner with the state on the conversion of a surplus site to affordable housing, said Sacramento Mayor, Darrell Steinberg. “As we reinvent our downtown for the telework age, we have an opportunity to bring thousands more people to underused buildings while also addressing our severe housing shortage. We look to the state to be a strong partner in that effort.”

“Now is the time, as urban centers are looking for ways to rebound from the pandemic, to creatively evaluate underutilized assets for alternative opportunities,” said Downtown Sacramento Partnership Executive Director, Michael Ault. “AB 2592 gives Sacramento another tool to envision the future of our urban core.”

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the state can play a key role in accelerating housing production by transitioning state buildings that will be underutilized as the state formalizes its permanent work-from-home policies. As of March 2022, DGS has already identified 92 state properties that could be transitioned to housing, with 8 of those properties located in Sacramento.

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Kevin McCarty represents California’s 7th Assembly District, which include the cities of Sacramento, West Sacramento and unincorporated Sacramento County. McCarty serves as Chair of the Assembly Budget Subcommittee on Education Finance. Website of Assemblymember Kevin McCarty: https://a07.asmdc.org/