Gavin Newsom views Huntington Beach as the poster child for what ails housing affordability in California, and his administration will stop at nothing to make an example out of the beachside city.
On Monday, California expanded its lawsuit against Huntington Beach to include the city’s failure to adopt a state-mandated housing element.
The city’s housing plan expired 16 months ago. The City Council’s conservative majority rejected a new plan last Tuesday by a vote of 4-3.
Surf City isn’t alone. As Mayor Tony Strickland noted, over 200 cities also lack approved housing plans. Strickland criticized the state for targeting Huntington Beach for reprisal.
The state is already suing Huntington Beach for its ban on accessory dwelling units (ADUs). City leaders requested an injunction, but were rebuffed by a federal judge. The city has since resumed processing ADU applications.
“Time and time again, Huntington Beach has demonstrated they are part of the problem by defiantly refusing every opportunity to provide essential housing for its own residents,” Attorney General Rob Bonta said in a news release. “We won’t stand idly by as Huntington Beach continues to flagrantly violate state housing laws.”