Unlike past years, when California politicians ran record budget surpluses, state leaders were forced to contend with a $32 billion deficit ahead of the 2023-24 budget.
The shortfall led to weeks of tough negotiations, and a deal was struck late Monday between Gov. Gavin Newsom and top Democratic lawmakers. announced that they had reached an agreement.
“We begin the budget process this time with serious economic challenges but with one overarching goal: to protect California’s progress,” state Senator Interim President Toni Atkins said in a statement. This budget does exactly that.”
Clearly, this progress also extends to several housing and development initiatives.
one is national “Everyone Dreams” ProgramIt’s a down-payment assistance scheme for first-time buyers that was so popular that it ran out within two weeks of launching this year. The program has a budget of $300 million and the government provides funds to homebuyers in exchange for a share of ownership. Earlier this year, Newsom had proposed reducing the program as a cost-saving measure, but the new budget deal includes an additional $200 million to improve the program, california affairs report.
The scheme isn’t the only provision in the proposed budget for first-home buyers. The state’s CalHome program, which is administered by the Department of Housing and Community Development and provides housing rehabilitation and tech-advising grants to local agencies and nonprofits, also received $50 million.
The budget also includes another $50 million in grant programs to help homeowners build ADUs — a move that fits well with years of efforts by state politicians to encourage more development of granny flats.
Budget discussions between Newsom and Democratic leaders have mostly been sidelined in recent weeks as the governor belatedly pushed through new legislation to ease CEQA requirements to streamline major infrastructure projects. After a compromise, the governor agreed to drop a controversial $16 billion underground water tunnel project from the legislation.
The budget deal also adds $1 billion to the statewide homeless fund, the same amount allocated in the previous two years.