California housing crunch

Susan Kirsch, Mill Valley

Re “California faces massive costs related to climate change. Oil industry must pay its fair share,” Sen. Scott Wiener, Feb. 26, 2020.

Sen. Scott Wiener has the principle right in his commentary.

Change the headline and Sen. Wiener might be writing about housing: California faces massive costs related to housing. Corporations must pay their fair share.

In another paraphrase: It’s only right that successful corporations that created the problem, help our cash-strapped municipalities fund efforts to mitigate the harm.

Thanks to the brave work of the Embarcadero Institute, we learn the housing shortfall is 1.2 million units, not 3.5 million units. 

“I’m keenly aware that struggling municipal budgets cannot—and should not—take on such enormous costs alone,” Wiener writes about climate change. 

Yet legislators annually pass unfunded housing mandates that undermine municipalities’ capacity to do their core work around governance, finance, and planning.

Wiener’s principle that industry pays its fair share for costs related to climate change equally applies to corporations paying their fair share for housing.

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