Mayor Lee’s Executive Directive to Accelerate Housing Production & Protect the Existing Housing Stock
On December 18, 2013, Mayor Edwin M. Lee announced a Mayoral Executive Directive ordering all City departments that have the legal authority over the permitting or mapping of new or existing housing to prioritize in their administrative work plans the construction and development of all net new housing including permanently affordable housing.
Mayor Lee also asked that Department Heads form a Working Group, with three primary tasks:
- Task (1)making recommendations to the Mayor for City polices and administrative actions that could be implemented to preserve and promote rental housing in San Francisco;
- Task (2) implementing a process to have the Planning Commission consider Discretionary Review hearings when a loss of housing is proposed; and
- Task (3) serving as an advisory body to municipal departments with permitting authority and as a clearinghouse for code compliance checks for buildings that are being withdraw from the rental market under Residential Rent Stabilization and Arbitration Ordinance sections 37.9(a)(8), 37.9(a)(9), 37.9(a)(10) and 37.9(a)(13), or a Notice of Intent to Withdraw units from the residential market under Section 37.9(a).
Working Group Responds
Tom Hui, Director of the Department of Building Inspection, and John Rahaim, Director of the Planning Department, responded to this Executive Directive by chairing a working group that included representatives from the Mayor's Office, Planning Department, Department of Building Inspection, Mayor's Office of Housing and Community Development, Rent Board, Fire Department, Department of Public Works, SF Public Utilities Commission, Mayor's Office on Disability, Commission on Community Investment and Infrastructure, City Attorney's Office, Planning Commission, and Building Inspection Commission, as well as representatives from non-City agencies, such as San Francisco Planning and Urban Research, Council of Community Housing Organizations, SF Apartment Association, Small Property Owners, and the Housing Rights Committee. The Working Group met three times in public meetings during January, 2014.
The Working Group’s recommendations to the Mayor can be viewed here. These recommendations are organized under each of the three Executive Directive tasks.
We are committed to immediately implementing the short-term responses under each Task. These short-term responses include:
- Tasks 1 and 2: Thirteen short-term, administrative changes that will speed review of new housing permits; retain existing, habitable units; and encourage private parties to build more housing, consistent with our General Plan.
- Task 3: Two short-term measures will ensure that the Rent Board will be able to inform tenants about their rights to habitable units and that the City is routinely checking on existing compliance as units transition under Rent Ordinance Sections 37.9(a)(8-10, 13).