Government Relations

Advocacy, Influence, Results

The Bay Area Council Government Relations Committee is works at both the state and federal level as the advocacy arm of the Council.  Our job is to support the work of the policy committees and ensure that the positions we take as an organization are voiced at the local, state and federal levels.

2023 Goals

  • The Council will step into a more significant regional convener role at the state level from both a political and a policy standpoint, activating and leveraging the Bay Area Caucus as well as driving major policy proposals.
  • With significant member focus and activity in Sacramento on a variety of bills and regulatory proceedings, the Council will position itself as an “on the ground” advocacy asset for membership alongside Sacramento assets members currently work with.
  • Continue to be effective advocates for members with divided government returning to Washington D.C.
  • Bring state and federal representatives and their staff aboard the Klamath to build connections between legislators and members.

2023 Sponsored Bills

AB 321, Sales and Use Tax: exemptions: zero-emission public transportation ferries

Author: Wilson (Suisun City)

Summary: Would facilitate and accelerate the wider use of zero-emission ferries by exempting them from state sales and use taxes. Consistent with the Bay Area Council’s work to expand regional ferry service as a commute alternative and reduce harmful greenhouse gas and other emissions.

Read the text of AB 231


AB 990 Water quality: low impact development: infill housing projects

Author: Grayson (Concord)

Summary: Would require local agencies grant all applicable water treatment reduction credits for qualifying infill housing projects in the Bay Area, preventing the regional water board from repealing an important streamlining for housing. Consistent with the Council’s work to build more housing the region.

Read the text of AB 990


AB 1114 Planning and zoning: housing development projects: postentitlement phase permits

Author: Haney (San Francisco)

Summary: Would prevent cities from issuing building code permits in a discretionary way, after a project has been gone through the full process of approval and has been entitled. One of the only localities that still allows these appeals is the city of San Francisco. This bill aligns with Council efforts to accelerate the process of building housing in the city.

Read the text of AB 1114


AB 1287 Density Bonus Law: additional density bonus and incentives or concessions: California Coastal Act of 1976

Author: Alvarez (San Diego)

Summary: Existing law requires cities and counties to provide developers with a density bonus – or the permission to build a project with greater density and waive certain local standards — and if a project provides units for low-income or very low-income households.

This bill would require that cities and counties afford an additional density bonus for projects that reserve 24% of units for low-income households, 15% of units for very low-income households, or 44% of units for moderate income households. The bill would also require cities and counties to provide additional incentives to projects that fall into any one of those categories and provide additional units for moderate income households. Support the Council’s goal to construct more affordable housing throughout California.

Read the text of AB 1287


AB 1464 Toll Bridges: Richmond-San Rafael Bridge

Author: Connolly (San Rafael)

Summary: Paves the way for the legislature to take measures to improve traffic on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, which is state-owned. Consistent with the Council’s work to create smoother, more efficient transit throughout the Bay Area.

Read the text of AB 1464


AB 1633 Housing Accountability Act: disapprovals: California Environmental Quality Act

Author: Ting (San Francisco)

Summary: In infill areas, would prevent local governments from pocket-vetoing development projects by refusing to complete required environmental reviews under CEQA. Instead, local governments would be required to set timelines for the completion of environmental reviews in addition to other requirements. Consistent with our work to build more housing in the Bay Area.

Read the text of AB 1633


AB 1033 Accessory Dwelling Units: local ordinances: separate sale or conveyance

Author: Ting (San Francisco)

Summary: This bill promotes affordable home ownership by allowing accessory dwelling units (ADU’s) to be sold separately from a primary residence.

Read the text of AB 1033


SB 76 Alcoholic beverages: music venue license: entertainment zones: consumption

Author: Wiener (San Francisco)

Summary: This bill would allow licensees holding music venue license to apply to the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control for caterers and events permits.

Would authorize cities to create designated “entertainment zones” within which businesses permitted to sell alcohol may allow customers to leave the premises and consume beverages on streets and sidewalks. Essentially, this bill would create “open container” areas for cultural and nightlife purposes, subject to certain restrictions.

Aligns with our efforts to revive downtown areas that suffered economic hardship during the pandemic and its ongoing aftermath.

Read the text of SB 76


SB 294 Housing development projects: floor area ratios

Author: Wiener (San Francisco)

Summary: A building’s floor-area-ratio is the measurement of its useable floor area in relation to the area of the lot it is on. The more units or floors a building has, the higher it’s floor-to-area ratio will be.

This bill prevents local governments from setting a floor-area-ratio standards that is less then 2.5 for housing developments that 11-20 units and less than 1.25 for projects of more than 20 units. Consistent with our work to build more housing the Bay Area.

Read the text of SB 294


SB 634 Opportunity Housing: use by right: building standards

Author: Becker (San Mateo)

Would streamline the installation of temporary, modular housing or “opportunity homes” on vacant land, providing immediate shelter for thousands of unsheltered homeless individuals.

Read the text of SB 634


For a full list of all our bill positions click here.


Government Relations Committee Co-Chairs:

Kristina Lawson, Managing Partner, Hanson Bridgett LLP

Rebecca Prozan, Head, West Coast Region, Government Affairs and Public Policy, Google

Policy Leads

Matt Regan image
Matt Regan

Senior Vice President, Public Policy

(415) 946-8710

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