SacBee: Don’t Forget the Workers Who Build Affordable Housing

SacBee: Don’t Forget the Workers Who Build Affordable Housing
August 18, 2016 Peter

Construction continued last December at the Mill at Broadway, an infill development in Sacramento.While Gov. Jerry Brown has resisted expansive proposals to address Californians’ basic need for affordable homes, he’s now pushing to fast-track housing projects by curtailing local zoning and environmental regulations if a developer aims as few as 5 percent of units to lower-income households. Labor advocates suggest that developers who would benefit ought to pay their workers “prevailing wages” – a minimum that reflects local market standards. Some claim this plan can work only if contractors are free to undercut local wage standards. But is the best way to build our way out of California’s housing affordability crisis to stand by while residential builders drive down wages of people who actually do the building?

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