California affordable housing bills clear Assembly

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) The California Assembly has approved a multi-bill package to address the state's affordable housing crunch.

California lacks an estimated 1.5 million affordable housing units compared to demand, and the state's homelessness rate is disproportionately high.

Six bills aimed at addressing the crisis cleared the Assembly late Thursday after months of negotiations and cajoling.

They would allow developers to bypass some local development regulations when building affordable apartment complexes and provide housing money through a $4 billion bond and a new $75 fee on real estate transaction documents.

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Several Assembly Democrats in competitive districts were wary of backing the new fee after already voting this year to raise the gas tax.

The bills all need Senate approval on Friday.