Gavin Newsom Won’t Block Building in High-Fire Areas

By Kathleen Ronayne : nbclosangeles – excerpt

A desire to live near nature is embedded in California’s ethos, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday as he explained why he doesn’t want to block home building near forested areas at high risk for wildfires.

“There’s something that is truly Californian about the wilderness and the wild and pioneering spirit,” Newsom said in an interview with The Associated Press. “I’m not advocating for no (building).”

Newsom on Friday released a report outlining the challenges of California’s growing wildfire threat that suggested local government “de-emphasize” building in high-risk areas around forests. But he told the AP it was a loose suggestion aimed at starting a debate about how Californians can build smarter and closer to urban centers and economic hubs.

More than 2.7 million Californians live in areas state fire officials say are at a very high hazard for wildfires, according to an AP analysis of census data and state fire maps. Nearly 180 cities and towns are in those very high hazard areas…(more)

Good of Newsom to avoid more state regulations on local communities be they urban or not. Fires do not stop at city limits. One can hardly label Santa Rosa and the Oakland Hills as rural areas and the worst damage in an earthquake is often caused by fires and water used to put them out.

City Attorney Outlines Impacts on Santa Barbara of State Housing Legislation

By Giana Magnoli : noozhawk – excerpt

With laws ‘basically designed to strip local control,’ city planners are working to create objective design standards for development projects.

Santa Barbara city planners will spend the next year creating objective design standards for development projects in response to the package of state housing legislation that then-Gov. Jerry Brown approved for California in 2017.

Assistant City Attorney Tava Ostrenger presented a breakdown of the legislation’s local impact to the Planning Commission on Thursday and said it was “basically designed to strip local control.”

The intent of the legislation is to boost housing development and affordability, streamline development, and increase accountability and enforcement of cities’ and counties’ housing goals… (more)

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