BUILDER The Magazine of the Building Industry Association of Southern California
• Certainty in Uncertain Times – A Message from BIASC President Tom Grable • Hindsight is 2020: Q&A with BIASC CEO Jeff Montejano • Connecting with Your Elected Officials: Letters from Your County Supervisors • Local & State Government Affairs News • Chapters and Councils Updates Teresina in Lake Forest / Shea Homes
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Learn More at biasc.org/membership Southern California BUILDER | September 2020
Cover Photo: Teresina in Lake Forest Shea Homes
What’s Inside President’s Message
Q&A with CEO Jeff Montejano
BIASC Team Roster
Letters from the Supervisors
Living With Covid-19
BIASC Chapter Executive Updates
Member Highlight: We Dig BIA
SCAG Update: Recent & Ongoing Activities
HomeAid Orange County
Building Industry Show Announcement
BIA Orange County Next Gen Update
Council on SAGE Update
Chief Editor Craig Foster BIASC Executive Vice President Editor & Production Coordinator Karissa Willette BIASC Public Affairs Manager 2020 BIASC President Tom Grable TRI Pointe Homes Southern California Division President BIASC CEO Jeff Montejano Executive Officer
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA BUILDER is a copyrighted publication produced by the Building Association of Southern California. Advertising and editorial inquiries and materials should be emailed to: email@example.com. All publication rights are fully reserved.
BIASC President & TRI Pointe Homes Southern California President
IN UNCERTAIN TIMES Having seen countless ups and downs during my career in the homebuilding industry, it’s safe to say that 2020 has been a year like no other. While uncertainty continues to loom over us all, for better or worse, there are some aspects of our industry that will never change.
to advocating on behalf of our members. In the face of unprecedented circumstances, we have assembled new and innovative ways to defend our industry across multiple battlefronts in the areas of advocacy, legal, education, and communications.
History has shown us that even in times of crisis, certain governmental agencies will continue to entertain legislation and regulations that will be detrimental to our collective livelihoods. This is certainly the case today as governmental agencies at all levels strategically push forward with new legislative and regulatory actions thinking that our attention is diverted away from their efforts by the increased challenges that we are incurring in our daily jobs in this unusual environment.
BIASC has successfully deployed multiple rapid response measures to protect our industry. Our members should be heartened to know that our BIASC team has been performing like “smoke jumpers,” putting out spot fires throughout our region. These have ranged from delaying harmful housing and transportation plans at the regional level, to outright stopping local orders which threatened to drastically limit or outright stop local government from conducting critical services including reviewing construction plans, issuing permits, and conducting inspections.
While these unrelenting attacks on our industry are frustrating, our members can be reassured by the fact that no matter the challenge, BIASC has consistently demonstrated an unwavering commitment
As part of our continuing efforts to defend our industry, over the last several months, BIASC has sent tens of thousands of emails to elected officials through our new digital advocacy platform. Much of the credit
goes to our members who have demonstrated a willingness to respond to BIASC’s multiple calls to action, no matter the issue. As a result, these efforts have secured several critical victories for our industry. We also know that the fight is far from over. BIASC will continue to work aggressively with our elected leaders, reminding them that the housing crisis has not gone away. With over 2/3 of California households unable to afford the purchase of a median-priced home, we can certainly expect this number to worsen as a result of the negative economic impacts caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. We must also remind our elected officials that in this difficult economy, new housing construction is more important than ever. When homes are being built at a robust pace, a thriving housing construction industry has shown to be a considerable economic driver. And while the actions of some may be discouraging, our industry needs to acknowledge that many of our elected leaders are doing their best and are simply overwhelmed with the unprecedented challenges of today. It’s incumbent upon the building industry to offer our help and expertise in overcoming the obstacles before us now, and those that will undoubtedly come in the future. I can assure you that regardless of what we may face in the months and years to come, your BIASC team will be unrelenting in the fight to protect our industry. We will continue to battle forward. As Winston Churchill once said, “If you’re going through hell, keep going.”
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Q & A with CE O Jeff: Jeff Montejano BIASC Executive Officer
BIA Past, Present & Future Q & A with CEO Jeff Montejano by former CEO Mike Balsamo Mike - Q: How has the COVID-19 pandemic impacted both the homebuilding industry and BIASC as an organization? Jeff - A: COVID-19 has adversely affected every industry over the past six months, and just like our builders, we are adapting, changing, and aggressively moving forward in the fastest and safest manner possible. Our member engagement is very high. Many people are taking advantage of our online platforms. Our staff has worked around the clock to ensure our online platforms, communications, networking, and advocacy efforts remain our top priority. In fact, we are launching more programs and initiatives than we have done in previous years. Our membership retention remains robust as we continue to remain the largest BIA in the state and one of the largest in the country.
Q: What are the greatest short-term and longterm challenges BIASC must address moving forward? A: Short-term, we need to continue with an aggressive push to keep our counties and cities open for business. Our members already know our industry is essential; however, some elected officials don’t completely agree. It’s our job to continuously remind them about the critical role that the homebuilding industry plays in our economy, particularly in light of the state’s housing crisis. We must also continue to develop creative opportunities to keep our members networking and doing business together. We have some new ideas we
Rancho Mission Viejo Senior Vice President— Governmental Relations BIASC Executive Committee Member & BIASC PAC Vice Chair Former BIASC CEO
are working on that we would like to roll out by the end of the year.
Q: Care to share these ideas? A: These ideas are in the development stage, but I can tell you what they are designed to accomplish. We want to make sure our members get top priority when doing business with our builders, so we might be changing some of the rules while also creating some unique opportunities for our associate members. If we are successful in this concept, membership will mean more advantages and benefits for our members with more business opportunities. We want our membership to be a positive necessity for their businesses, not an added cost they need to consider upon renewal time.
Q: What about long-term challenges? A: Long-term, we need our elected officials to address and embrace change with our outdated transit system, introduce telecommuting as a builder-friendly mitigation measure, and finally to let us build homes in areas where there is vacant land where the approval process is less time-consuming. We need a good combination of urban and suburban type of housing that includes multifamily and single-family units. Otherwise, home buyers will be continually priced out of the market. Our new digital advocacy program gives our people a stronger and more prominent voice with our city councils which can help further our housing agenda. We have sent over 150,000 emails to elected officials since March, so we are off to a great start. Article continues on page 9 >
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Q: You have been at BIASC for over two years now, what has your experience been like?
Q: What are some things you don’t enjoy about this job?
A: It’s been an amazing and unpredictable experience that I could never fully describe in a few words. Bottomline, the people are the best part. I’ve enjoyed meeting so many people working with the staff, members, and chapters. I also love the challenge of being able to advocate for the building industry in one of the most stringent states in the nation. It’s a huge honor, especially with our organization’s rich history and following in the footsteps of former CEO’s, presidents, board members, and staff who have accomplished great things for our industry.
A: Craig Foster. Kidding. If I didn’t enjoy it, I would not be here. Our industry is faced with so many obstacles and battles it’s tough to win them all. So yes, losing battles is not enjoyable my any means, but battling forward is what it’s all about.
Q: We all know BIASC made significant changes to the organization. How would you describe working with the chapters and members during the effort and the final transition? A: Transition or change is never easy, but it is necessary for our industry to survive in this state so our members can continue to grow their businesses. BIASC is like a very large extended family. It has a ton of family history, and not every family member will always agree on everything. Still, I think for the most part, we can all agree that protecting our industry, being more politically relevant, recruiting more members, and getting more projects approved will make everyone’s lives a little better. Overall, the transition has allowed us to move in a more positive direction on the operational side with more of a results-driven philosophy that can be quantified and measured. The chapter boards are highly active, and we are all excited about the next phase of becoming an even stronger organization in Southern California and throughout the state. Building and networking more is what it’s all about.
Q: What are things you enjoy about this job? A: I enjoy working with our talented team and our dedicated board members. We try to impose a high level of creativity, execution, and speed with a ton of flexibility. Laying out a plan, regardless of the obstacles and achieving the objective or goal is very rewarding for me. I love strategic challenges and collaborating with my colleagues.
Q: Why should anyone continue to support or join BIASC? A: We are the largest BIA in the state and one of the largest in the country. Our organization has launched more new programs and initiatives in the areas of networking, education and advocacy than any other BIA in the country. Yes, I am saying that because it’s true. In the last year, we’ve hosted the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson at our new and improved Building Industry Show, sent 150,000 emails to elected officials in just 6 months and have created innovative webinars & networking platforms that continue to attract new members. Most of all, BIASC is now aggressively supporting projects for our members in the areas of advocacy, media, legal and community support. It’s truly an investment that pays off being part of our association.
Q: Lastly, what are BIASC’s most significant recent accomplishments? A: Despite the pandemic and California’s dismal and complex approach to building new homes, BIASC has continued to thrive and move forward with events and advocacy. We have adapted to the current situation and have come up with innovative solutions to attract new members and retain current membership. Even in an economic downturn, our chapters remain open for business and have provided good value to our members. We stopped cities from closing during this pandemic, we stopped an adverse regional housing plan for Southern California, and we are now helping pass crucial housing projects for our members. We also have some exciting upcoming news on some major victories that I can’t quite disclose yet but will very soon. These accomplishments exemplify the resilience and dedication of our members and staff. I am so proud to be part of such a great organization that is building the future of California.
BIA of Southern California
CURRENT TEAM ROSTER MEET THE BIASC EXECUTIVE TEAM
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER BIASC
CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER BIASC
LAURA BARBER CARLOS RODRIGUEZ VICE PRESIDENT EVENTS/HR BIASC
EXECUTIVE OFFICER BALDY VIEW CHAPTER
EXECUTIVE OFFICER ORANGE COUNTY CHAPTER
EXECUTIVE OFFICER RIVERSIDE CHAPTER
VICE PRESIDENT LOS ANGELES/VENTURA CHAPTER
DR. MARK GREY
MEET THE BIASC TEAM
KAITLIN RADCLIFF LISA MEADOWS KARISSA WILLETTE BIASC DIRECTOR OF MEMBERSHIP
BIASC MEMBER SERVICES MANAGER
BIASC PUBLIC AFFAIRS MANAGER
BIASC DIRECTOR OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
BIASC SIGN OPERATIONS MANAGER
BIASC DIRECTOR OF ACCOUNTING
BIASC DIRECTOR OF ENVIRONMENTAL AFFAIRS
ROB REDWITZ BIASC CONTROLLER
BIASC LEGAL (BILD)
BIASC LEGAL (BILD)
BIASC LABOR RELATIONS
JORDAN BRANDMAN BIASC LABOR RELATIONS
CHRIS KHAN BIASC SACRAMENTO GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS
BIASC WATER POLICY ANALYST
BIASC ADVOCACY & COMMUNICATIONS
CHUCK HAHN BIASC DIGITAL ADVOCACY & CAMPAIGNS
BIASC LA ADVOCACY
Learn more about BIASC at BIASC.ORG
BIASC GENERAL COUNSEL
THANK YOU TO OUR BIASC BUILDER MEMBERS
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Learn More at biasc.org/membership Southern California BUILDER | September 2020
BIA of Southern California
GOVERNING BOARD MEET THE 2020 BIASC EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
BIASC VICE PRESIDENT
BIASC SECRETARY & TREASURER
BIASC IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT
MEET THE 2020 BIASC GOVERNING BOARD
THANK YOU FOR YOUR LEADERSHIP Southern California BUILDER | September 2020
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In my 43 years in this industry I must admit I have never seen such chaos, disruption, rolling markets, illness and uncertainty as what 2020 has brought us so far. Now the second act of 2020 begins. Our association’s income backbone is made up of membership, our sign program and events. Without these, our key mission for our members, advocacy, stalls. We realized in late February that events, which represent 38 percent of our income, would be minimal for quite some time. Membership has been holding steady and we have launched several campaigns to increase new membership through early renewal discount programs and referral programs. Since launching, these have gained good traction and we are hoping they will continue to grow as more members participate in these programs. Events are our budget’s black hole thus far, reduced by 90% from our pre-virus projections. But like Cooper in Interstellar, we are pushing through. We have had recent success with golf tournaments, zoom networking events, live shows with Las Vegas and television performers and, most of all, the series of relevant Zoom educational programs on key topics and guest speakers – just like the meetings we are not able to hold in person now. We hope to have many more of these productions in the second half of 2020. A sure sign that the industry as a whole is doing well is that booth sales for the Building Industry Show, originally scheduled for October, have exceeded expectations. Unfortunately, to ensure maximum attendance and safety, we have moved the show to March 2021. Stay tuned for more updates. Even in the face of COVID, or maybe because of it, the regional office has continued to roll out new benefits for our members.
BIASC Executive Vice President
We recently launched the BIASC Academy of Home Building Education, an all-new online platform. Its initial class curriculum of Level 1 and 2 courses is right for the times: Covid-19 safety and best practices at the job site. The course is designed for onsite construction managers and trades forepersons. When they pass the exam at the conclusion of the course, participants will receive a certificate of completion and stake signs to place throughout the site acknowledging their completion of the course and declaring the site a “Safety First Job Site.” This is important to our trades, visitors to the site, residents around the site and inspectors and other officials that regularly must be on the site. Another program, Bid to Builder, is in planning. This platform will allow Trade members to qualify for builder project bidding pools online. We also recently launched our MIT program (Members in Transition). This program allows displace employees of members stay to active with the BIA at a reduced dues structure. New Home Showcase, our regional online marketing/ traffic driver platform for new homes, hasn’t been forgotten. It continues to gain traction and increase builder sales. And lastly, I am pleased to roll out BIASC’s first Digital Magazine. This publication will start out as a quarterly edition with a plan to make it monthly. It all depends on your input, so we hope you enjoy the interesting reading that follows.
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Letter from the Supervisor:
Donald P. Wagner Orange County Board of Supervisors Third District
Greetings, Thank you to the BIA community for your help in developing and shaping the future of Orange County. You have a had profound and positive impact on the way we live and work, improving the lives for millions in our incredibly diverse County. I share with the BIA membership a determination to foster commerce and entrepreneurism. We all know that 2020 has been a challenging year full of twists and turns. I am confident we will get through these times and come out stronger and appreciate your continued commitment to Orange County.
The BIA has been a stalwart voice of its members for sound and safe public policies. Its members should be proud for what they are doing for all of us. Thank you for your dedication and service to your customers, clients, and the community at large. I wish you all health and prosperity. Please feel free to contact my office at (714) 834-3330 if you ever have any questions and stay social @donwagnerca.
Here are some things Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m working for on your behalf. On July 28, the OC Board of Supervisors unanimously passed an item I proposed to help our struggling business owners expand operations to the great outdoors. I have also worked to allocate $15 million in CARES ACT funding for small business grants and $500,000 in grants to arts-related businesses.
Letter from the Supervisor:
On The Debut Edition Of The
BIA DIGITAL MAGAZINE! 2020 has ushered in a number of challenges. At this time, our County remains on the state’s Monitoring List, which restricts our ability to continue reopening our economy or allow schools to provide in-person instruction. Getting off the list requires us to show tangible success in reducing new positive cases, hospitalizations and ICU admissions — and that requires strict compliance with various public health mandates. Intensifying its efforts to combat COVID-19 and diminish spread of the coronavirus, the County is implementing a COVID-19 Compliance Education/ Engagement/Enforcement (EEE) Plan in coordination with local cities. The new campaign is designed to encourage compliance with federal, state and County public health mandates. A return to a strong economy also depends on our ability to keep the essential service of residential construction moving forward in San Bernardino County. Continuing to meet our housing demands will not only create jobs but will ensure we avoid household overcrowding which can compromise public health. That’s why collaborating with the Building Industry Association Baldy View Chapter (BIA) remains a
San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors Chairman
high priority. I’m pleased to report that the Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution extending the expiration dates identified in the San Bernardino County Code for approved tentative subdivision maps, conditionally approved use and development permits, approved construction plans and issued permits that were scheduled to expire. Similarly, the County of San Bernardino extended the deadline from June to October for previously permitted projects to build to the 2016 California Building Code. We are also proud to be one of the first counties in the state to response to BIA’s call to action and submit a letter to Governor Newson to request an extension of the implementation deadline for the Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) regulation required under Senate Bill 743. These are just some of the ways that the County is partnering with industry to support small business and our local economy. In these challenging times, the Board is doing its part in supporting the backbone of our local economy. I look forward to continuing our history of collaboration with the BIA and wish you, your businesses, and your families all the best.
ABOUT BIASC ACADEMY With over 90 years of experience and leadership, BIASC is a trusted source in helping our members achieve their business goals and projections. The BIASC provides services that are essential to the success of our members in the building Industry. The BIASC is now providing online educational services to help keep our members informed and up-to-date on how to best adapt to the continually changing circumstances impacting our industry. Level 1: Construction Managers and Superintendents
Level 2: Construction Managers and Superintendents
This course will educate construction managers on all the vital steps in making your project and all site personnel and trades compliant to current guidelines that should be practiced during these turbulent times.
The purpose of this course is to ensure that all trade foremen are educated on best practices pertaining to protection of the job site and the surrounding community.
LEARN MORE AND REGISTER AT BIASCACADEMY.ORG
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Letter from the Supervisor:
Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Fifth District
Congratulations to the Building Industry Association of Southern California (BIASC) on the launch of their digital magazine, “Southern California Builder.” BIASC and its Chapters have worked hard to maintain building and construction as essential functions during this challenging time. The County is grateful for ongoing advocacy that BIASC provides and we look forward to more opportunities to partner with community and business organizations such as BIASC. As a member of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, I am dedicated to fiscal responsibility and ensuring that taxpayer dollars are available to provide vital resources to our County residents. This has been especially important during the unprecedented time we’re facing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Obviously, supporting the needs of the millions of residents, businesses, schools and organizations that are suffering from the effects of COVID-19 remains my top priority as Chair of the Board this year. This pandemic has caused a significant disruption across the world and has had very real impacts locally. We are currently working with state and federal partners to address the many issues that this public health crisis created such as availability of testing, adequate hospital capacity, contact tracing, and protection of vulnerable populations – all in an effort to safely reopen the economy and get people back to work.
In addition to the County’s response to COVID, the other most pressing issue we face is the homelessness crisis. Our efforts to address homelessness must also include solutions to decrease the cost of building housing. We are working to find solutions to streamline unnecessary County processes and help drive down costs. As part of this effort, we want to retain a private sector expert to help maximize and utilize the County’s resources to bring needed housing online faster and more efficiently. The current cost of building housing stock is not tenable. And as this public health emergency progresses the demand for housing may increase as we see the full scope of the economic impacts to LA County. I look forward to continuing to work with BIASC on topics ranging from homelessness and housing affordability to jobs and the economy. Wishing you and your membership continued success!
Ventura County Board of Supervisors Third District
Letter from the Supervisor: Amid these challenging times, the Building Industry Association of Southern California (BIASC) has found ways to maintain the lines of communication between their organization and its membership. I’m delighted to be a part of BIASC’s inaugural digital magazine, “Southern California Builder”! During my time as Supervisor of Ventura County, I have made it a priority to get input and feedback from organizations, like BIASC, when crafting Countywide policies. Housing is a critical topic and having all stakeholders around the table when impactful decision are being made is vital. Today, we have to work harder than ever to secure the wellbeing of our residents and our economy. I believe that private property rights and healthy, environmentally responsible development plans, are critical to both quality of living for residents and a robust and thriving local economy. We must work together to find the right balance in order to provide opportunities for working families to succeed and grow. I hope to count on BIASC as a partner in that effort and look forward to working with your membership. Congratulation on the launch of your digital magazine!
Letter from the Supervisor:
V. Manuel Perez Riverside County Board of Supervisors Forth District
On behalf of Riverside County, welcome and congratulations on the inaugural issue of BIA Digital Magazine! Serving as Chair of the Riverside County Board of Supervisors has provided me the chance to see the county’s efforts up close as we battle the pandemic. We were one of the earliest jurisdictions in the nation to tackle this challenge, and we have a very good team working on the public health and economic recovery fronts. We often emphasize that the more we can do to fight this pandemic and save lives, the more successful and sustaining our economic recovery will be. Likewise, the more we can support our economy and make sure individuals can get back to work safely, the better we will be able to support the quality of life in the aftermath of this crisis. That’s why we have launched a community action plan to increase our public service announcements and education campaign, get 10 million masks distributed to the community, and ask residents to take the pledge to fight COVID through www.PledgeToFightCovid.com.
Our Economic Recovery Taskforce, under the leadership of Lou Monville, Interim Executive Director of BIA Riverside County Chapter, provides vigorous advocacy and support to businesses to keep our economy on a successful path. In this unprecedented time, our county’s development services have remained open to assist our custorµers in new and innovative ways. Staff continue to work diligently to intake new plans and permits, perform inspections, process planning cases and development activity, and expand online services. We are committed to doing our part to keep progress moving as much as possible. I want to acknowledge and thank the county policy and public health teams, Riverside County Public Information Officer Brooke Federico, Transportation & Land Management Agency Director Juan Perez, and all the members of the Economic Recovery Taskforce. Thank you, and I am proud to work with you to advance an energetic building industry that creates jobs and supports the growth of our economy and communities, locally and throughout our great state.
2020 has been the start new decade that few anticipated. Yet, BIASC events, advocacy and networking continue strong. As the world adapted, so have we. January Contracts Seminar Economic Forecast Dinner Play to Win Educational Series February BIAOC NextGen Advocacy Workshop Bowling Tournament GSMC Builder Perspective Builder Breakfast March Mechanics Lien Workshop The Legends Dinner Crafted Brew Networking 30 Year Celebration of the Council on SAGE April Utility Bootcamp Webinar Council on SAGE Update Webinar BIAOC NextGen Morning Buzz GSMC Social Hour with Rocky Tracy GSMC Social Hour with Ryan White & Janet Kemmerer
SAVE THE DATE
June Marketing in Today’s Environment BIA-LA/Ventura County Updates Southern California Edison Discussion with CEO Educational Series GSMC Frontline Sales Heroes 30 Year Celebration of the Council on SAGE July Doing Business Pt. 1 Educational Series Baseball, Business, and the Building Industry - A Dodger Stadium Tour Doing Business Pt. 2 Educational Series BIAOC NextGen Lunch & Learn Series August BIAOC Golf Tournament (Coto De Caza) Sold Out Southern California Virtual Water Conference - Sold Out BIAOC Women’s Leadership Conference - Sold Out
May Southern California Edison Covid-19 Updates Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) Update Educational Series SCAG Updates Educational Series
upcoming events BIA-LAV Virtual Meet the Builder - September 29 - October 1 BIA-LAV Happy Hour - September 24 Water Quality/Construction Permit/Vapor Emission Seminar - September 29 Council on SAGE Webinar – September 30 BIA-LAV Golf Tournament - October 6 Housing, Finance, and Innovation Summit - October 7 GSMC Webinar - October 21 BIA Riverside County Golf Tournament - October 26 SAGE Spotlight Awards – October 28 BIA-LAV Trap Shoot - November 2 BIA Riverside County Chapter Virtual Meet the Builder - November 9 -12 Meet & Greet at the Beach - A Networking Event - To Be Announced SoCal Honorary Awards - To Be Announced Chapter Installation Galas - To Be Announced Southern SoCal Honorary Awards - To Be Announced September
UPCOMING BIASC EVENTS A MESSAGE FROM BIASC VICE President of Events Dear Members, 2020 has been a year like no other and has brought many changes not just for the Association, but to our member companies as well. Our goal is to continuously find ways to keep in mind what our members need, and have made many changes in an effort to be as nimble as possible and fiscally responsible. We want to reassure you that while there have been many staffing changes, which were not easy to make, the BIA of Southern California and all four Chapters continue to work towards both advocacy and event goals that keep our industry strong. As we move into the end of the third quarter, we want to highlight all of the education and networking opportunities from this year and what we have planned for the rest of 2020. We will continue to look at new ways to keep our members engaged in ways they feel comfortable whether itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s virtual or in person. Our goal is to also continue to find ways to market all of our annual supporters in as many platforms as possible. As the Chapters collaborate more in the future, we will be mindful that many of you are wearing multiple hats and have limited time. We look forward to seeing you soon. We hope 2021 will allow for more in person networking opportunities. Please stay safe and healthy.
QUESTIONS? Please Contact: LAURA BARBER
BIASC VICE PRESIDENT OF EVENTS Southern California
firstname.lastname@example.org (949) 777-3861
Living With Covid-19
The Pandemic Has Changed Building Industry Public Affairs –
President Laer Pearce & Associates
MAYBE FOR THE BETTER In one San Gabriel Valley city where the City Council would rather not consider a proposal to build 28 new homes until after this November’s election, the city is using COVID-19 to delay public hearings on the project. Calling the project too important for online consideration by the City Council, they appear willing to keep hearings originally set for March or April in semi-permanent limbo. Just a few miles away in another San Gabriel Valley city, the City Council and staff want rapid approval of a slightly larger development project in order to avoid an institutional use allowed under the current zoning – while bolstering COVID-battered city finances with new fees and property tax revenues. Wanting to move forward quickly but feeling pressure from project opponents to not advance without “normal” public meetings, the city recently hosted what may have been the first COVID-compliant community workshops in the state – outdoors, socially distanced with face masks required – supplemented by an on-line workshop. About 150 persons participated between the two formats.
Welcome to building industry public affairs under COVID. Like all other aspects of life in 2020, many things are changing, some for the better, some for the worse. But overall, if the changes brought on by the pandemic are to some degree institutionalized, it could be a benefit to our highly public, highly regulated industry.
Waking to a New World As with every industry and family, BIASC’s first response to the pandemic was two-fold: Figuring out how to ensure the continued financial viability of its members and acting swiftly to protect the health of its workforce. In the early days of the pandemic, Gov. Gavin Newsom was considering shutting down home construction sites as part of the state’s effort to “flatten the curve.” BIASC responded by poring over federal documents until finding a way to present homebuilding as an essential industry. Within a few hours, working with CBIA, this information was presented to the governor.
As a result, worksites stayed open and BIA member companies and their employees had more financial security. With worksites remaining open, the next step was to ensure the protection of the crews. BIASC quickly created the BIASC Academy (biascacademy.org), an online school designed to teach what worksite managers need to know to implement COVID best practices and comply with the burgeoning list of new worksite regulations. Upon successfully completing the academy’s examination, they receive a certificate and “Safety First Job Site” signs they can post to reassure their sites’ workers and visitors. “The academy’s two levels target superintendents and construction managers at Level 1 and forepersons at Level 2 to ensure that managers at all levels know all the vital steps in making project worksites, site personnel and trades compliant with the guidelines and regulations that should be complied with during these turbulent times,” said Craig Foster, Executive Vice President and COO of BIASC. “We cover everything from assessing symptoms to cleaning and disinfecting tools and batteries.”
as a Delaying Tactic
On March 17, Governor Newsom issued an Executive Order allowing cities and counties to conduct their meetings and public hearings electronically. Most have done so, but some, like the San Gabriel Valley city mentioned earlier, are fine with conducting their business in public electronically – unless it’s a development project. Then COVID is their excuse to postpone the hearing “until things return to normal” – whenever that may be. Such behavior is irresponsible and the argument can even be made that it’s illegal, even if there are precedents aplenty of municipalities using any number of excuses to stretch out the timelines directed by
CEQA. But the production of badly needed housing shouldn’t be stopped because a municipality has decided that even if public hearings are being held on housing projects throughout the state, they simply are not practical or appropriate in their town. “If the new online public hearing process is good enough for a city to adopt its new budget, abate a nuisance or set assessments on properties in improvement districts, then it should be good enough for a housing project,” said Tim Paone, a land use attorney with Cox, Castle & Nicholson. Paone said that in at least one recent instance, the State Housing and Community Development Department (HCD) took the position that COVIDrelated selective deferrals equate to an unlawful moratorium on housing. In Simi Valley, which is not holding land use hearings, HCD asserted that the City must hold a public hearing on a mixed-use project with 83 affordable. Further, the State warned, under the Housing Accountability Act, the City may not be able to lawfully deny the project. “The bottom line is that while there will be inconveniences and minor unavoidable entitlement delays, cities should not be allowed to use COVID as an excuse to unlawfully delay projects,” Paone said.
The Zoom Shield No business plan for Zoom or any of its online meeting siblings could have anticipated the boost COVID gave them. Overnight they went from helpful accessories to the primary communication outlet for businesses – including the homebuilding industry and the municipalities that process its applications. The effects have been profound. According to BIASC’s Foster, the massive switch to Zoom calls and other aspects of the online world has transformed industry public affairs by swelling
acceptance and engagement in online and social platforms. He pointed to the recent successful campaign to slow implementation of VMT (vehicle miles traveled) traffic measuring regulations. Since VMT makes it more difficult and expensive to comply with CEQA’s requirements, it’s been a top industry public affairs priority to stop or slow its implementation. “Previously, a successful online public affairs campaign could be counted on to generate a few hundred or maybe even a thousand letters to electeds, but the VMT effort blew those out of the water, generating more than 10,000 letters,” Foster said. “Yes, it’s a big issue and implementation is just around the corner, but I think the main reason why the campaign generated so many letters and helped us delay implementation is that now people are just more comfortable with being an active part of the online world.” I saw the benefits of this broader acceptance of online public affairs platforms when I was on a call with a school district board member recently. As we talked, she received three BIA-generated emails from district residents urging her to support the Orange County development project we were discussing. Talk about helpful! This greater acceptance of online participation – if it is allowed to continue when things return to normal – could be a game-changer in the difficult task of getting supporters of new home projects to speak at public hearings. In normal times, supporters are asked to sit in crowded chambers listening to opponents give angry, belittling or threatening remarks from the podium. Then we expect them to go to the podium – with all those opponents’ eyes boring into their backsides – to speak in support. It is too much for many, so they just stay home and hope for the best.
Now, they can stay home, hope for the best … and comment from a virtual, hostility-free podium. Being able to address a Planning Commission or City Council from home without an audience will make it easier for the industry to go one-on-one from the podium against project opponents. That’s not just supposition; I am currently managing public outreach for three development projects and with all three, supporters are telling me they are more willing to participate since their comments can be made online. Even if opponents benefit from the same dynamic, the environment in the hearing room will be different. There will be no clapping or booing, no signs waving, no blocks of people in the same color t-shirt. Decisionmakers will make their decisions in a much less emotional environment – and that bodes well for our industry and its supporters, since we tend to be more fact-based and less emotional in our comments and presentations. Given this change, the industry should make it a priority to obtain legislation mandating municipalities and agencies continue to provide online participation opportunities even after hearing rooms reopen to the public. We should argue for the greatest possible opportunity to participate, backing our arguments with examples of how well municipalities adapted to the online format during the pandemic. Such legislation should also set forth minimum requirements for online participation in order to avoid how some cities have used COVID and online meetings to limit public participation. In Irvine, for example, comments now can only typed into an online box and are limited to just 500 characters. Look at the two paragraphs just above. If you were to try to submit a comment that long, you would 94 characters over the limit … so start cutting. How can meaningful comments be made under that restriction?
There is a silver lining though. In these cities that are, in my opinion, abusing the public hearing process with COVID as their excuse, our supporters may find a typed-in comment less hassle than even an oral comment they make from their living room in their pajamas – even if they’re limited to just 500 characters. As I said at the outset, things are changing under COVID, some for the better, some for the worse.
Laer Pearce, a Lifetime Board Member of the Orange County Chapter, is president of Laer Pearce & Associates, a public affairs and public outreach consultancy. He has been involved in the successful entitlement of over 300,000 housing units in California.
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RATION K RESTO ING SH POOL DEC LI O P & G GRINDIN & SEALING STAINING RDS + MORE ZA A H IP TR
THE GREEN CHOICE
Photo 1: Jonathan Frankel, Vice President of Forward Planning with New Urban West, addresses a COVID-compliant public workshop.
Delivering award-winning designs for over 50 years.
Photo 2: To maintain social distancing, chairs at a COVID-compliant public workshop cannot be moved.
DESIGNING FOR THE FUTURE. Southern California
Baldy View Chapter Update: Jim Perry
Baldy View Chapter President
Recently, the number of COVID-19 cases in San Bernardino County passed 10,000 and officials reported their highest one-day case increase. Unfortunately, the county also continues to trend toward increased positivity rates and increased hospitalizations with fewer intensive care hospital beds available from previous weeks. Despite these reports, the BIA Baldy View Chapter (BIA) continues to forge ahead with significant government affairs advocacy during the pandemic to ensure our members provide the essential service of housing production. Similarly, BIA remains focused on collaborating with local government agencies to ensure our members receive timely access to inspections and other vital entitlement services despite the nature of the COVID-19 reporting trends (Click here). The following summary provides a snapshot of other recent advocacy efforts critical to assisting BIA Members including: • SB 743 extension to July 1, 2021 - This legislation changes the way transportation impacts are identified under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) to a reduction of vehicle miles traveled (VMT). The adoption of VMT will require residential developers to quantify how many miles individuals will drive, which has the potential to increase the cost of a housing development, with the greatest impact to housing developments in remote rural areas that are located farther away from job centers. As a result of BIA outreach, the County of San Bernardino, the San Bernardino County Council of Government
BIA Baldy View Chapter Executive Officer
(representing 24 cities) and 11 other cities sent letters to Governor Newsom to request a one-year extension of the July 1, implementation date. • County of San Bernardino - Officials granted an extension from July to October for permitted projected as of December 31, 2019, to be constructed under the previous Title 24 construction code with an anticipated savings of $2.25/sf. • Joshua Tree threated species petition - The California Fish and Game Commission voted unanimously to support the BIA request for a continuance until August to consider a petition to list the western Joshua Tree as a threatened species under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA). Should the commission accept the petition, the Joshua tree would enter a “study” period, during which time, the western Joshua tree will be afforded the protections of a threatened species and eliminate the opportunity for development throughout portions of San Bernardino and Los Angeles Counties. • Fontana Unified School District - Postponed consideration of an increase from approximately $4 to $10 per square foot scheduled for June 16. BIA has launched an independent analysis in coordination with school district officials. For more information please contact BIA Baldy View Chapter Executive Officer Carlos Rodriguez at email@example.com
Orange County Chapter Update:
TIME TO Reduce REGULATION & Speed Up THE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS
Orange County Chapter President Vice President, Development & Forward Planning, MBK Rental Living
Prior to the pandemic one thing was clear: the state of California was suffering from a severe housing crisis. Home prices throughout the region and State were at record highs due to high demand and a staggering lack of supply. In Orange County, young families were being lost to surrounding counties as our 65 and older population more than doubled – risking our economic vitality as employers looked elsewhere for an adequate workforce. When the pandemic hit, one crisis was swapped for another, and the housing supply shortfall was understandably shadowed by stay at home orders and business closures. Government entities worked to manage the pandemic, ultimately coming to the realization that home construction must continue for the sake of the economy. But like every other business, home builders are just as susceptible to abnormal phenomena’s like a pandemic, and now face yet another hurdle in the long and expensive entitlement process. The housing crisis is still very real, and is now exacerbated as millions are asked to stay and work from home. We must continue to add to our housing stock if we ever plan to put a dent in our supply shortage and work to save our economy – but increasing the supply is not a silver bullet.
BIA Orange County Executive Officer
A recent UCLA study suggests that a 20% increase in housing stock could lower overall prices by 10%. However, in Orange County, an increase of 20% to our current stock of roughly 1,083,563 would come out to 216,712 housing units according to Cal State Fullerton. By using the Construction Industry Research Board (CIRB) housing permit data between the years of 2016-2019, Orange County averages just under 10,000 new housing permits per year – meaning it would take roughly 20 years to achieve this number. Even if this was feasible, deducting 10% from the current median home price still puts the average home out of reach for those earning the OC median household income. To further make things worse, Orange County has been moving in the wrong direction. In utilizing CIRB’s housing permit data again, Orange County has seen a 19% decline in housing permits between 2016 and 2019. Increasing our housing stock is essential – but we must make housing production more cost effective. According to a report by the McKinsey Global Institute, California’s local impact fees can account for up to 15% of the cost of a home, and can vary per jurisdiction. To compare nationally, California’s local impact fees are 3 times the national average.
The study goes on to say that time costs, driven mainly by the entitlement process, can contribute 30% of the finished cost of a home â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and is a significant factor in Californiaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s low housing production. As we continue to struggle with the effects of the on going pandemic and the resulting economic pressures businesses and government bodies are facing, policy makers need to combat the burdensome and expensive regulations that add cost and time to the development process. If local jurisdictions are serious about solving this problem, now is time to waive, defer, and limit impact fees, find ways to streamline the approval process, simplify design guidelines and advocate for CEQA reform. For more information please contact BIA Orange County Chapter Executive Officer Steven LaMotte at firstname.lastname@example.org
Los Angeles/Ventura Chapter Update: Dave Little
Los Angeles/Ventura Chapter President President of Pardee Homes’ LA/Ventura Division
BIA-LAV Vice President
Since mid-March, when COVID-19 regulations hit the region, the Building Industry Association of Southern California – Los Angeles/ Ventura (BIASC-LAV) chapter has remained at the forefront in keeping building as an essential service and fully functional during the pandemic. This has been in tandem with our participation in advocating alongside the California Building Industry Association (CBIA) at the State level. Early in the pandemic the cities of Santa Paula, Moorpark, Glendale and Manhattan Beach initially called for all or some construction to stop, despite the Governor’s Executive Order to maintain building. Following our staunch advocacy, all the cities reopened and updated their protocols. Our members also raised their voices, sending hundreds of letters to the nearly 600 elected officials in the Los Angeles/ Ventura cities and counties, urging them to keep government services and housing construction moving. Through all of this our industry employees’ safety and wellbeing has been our number one priority. To help in this effort, CBIA distributed the following “Infectious Disease Jobsite Safety Protocols” to our entire statewide membership. In our region we must be vigilant in following protocols to avoid shutdowns and spreading the virus, particularly as the second wave of COVID-19 emerges. In a proactive step, BIASC has rolled out an academy program to provide our members with supplementary safety training certifications. Learn more at biascacademy.org.
In addition to COVID-19 advocacy we have been monitoring the many housing policies making their way through the city and county legislative processes. The most notable include: • County of LA Inclusionary Housing Ordinance • County of LA Art Fee Ordinance • County of LA Sustainability and Climate Action Plans • City of Wood Construction Motion • City of LA Vacancy Tax • County of LA Affordable Housing Action Plan (AHAP) Ordinances • Long Beach Inclusionary Zoning Ordinance We have been following these items closely, testifying at public comment, sending letters, participating in working groups and more. BIASC and our LAV chapter have been dedicated to adapting to these unprecedented times by coupling our traditional advocacy techniques with digital advocacy. BIASC’s digital advocacy reaches out to constituents across all walks of life; activating thousands of diverse, new voices who can communicate their support for housing directly to their elected officials through one click or phone call. This is working. We have focused on statewide campaigns and are now deploying this
tactic locally. Not only are we focused on housing policies, but we have continued to expand our assistance on individual project support. We are helping projects out of committees, aiding in the expediency of the permitting processes and ushering others through bureaucratic hurdles. BIASC-LAV has not missed a beat. All of this work has taken place while BIASC has undergone significant structural changes. At BIASCLAV, I, Diana Coronado, will be serving as your main point of contact for all things related to the Los Angeles/Ventura chapter. With the leadership of our President, Dave Little of Pardee Homes, alongside our dedicated Board of Directors, we are moving forward with our mission of protecting the homebuilding industry. BIASC and our four regional chapters are no longer working in silos, instead we are working across regional jurisdictions, utilizing the expertise of our entire organization in a more member-driven, proactive and focused effort. Please donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t hesitate to contact me to learn more about BIASC-LAVâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s advocacy, events and membership opportunities. For more information please contact BIA Los Angeles/Ventura Chapter Vice President Diana Coronado at email@example.com.
A proud, new BIA Member
DON'T LET COVID-19 STOP YOUR DEVELOPMENT PROJECT Curt Pringle & Associates is a public affairs and strategic consulting firm that has been in business for over 20 years. We firmly believe that the world shouldn't stop because of COVID19. Even during this time, we have successfully led entitlement and outreach efforts on challenging development projects. Our efforts have included: online community meetings, targeted social media ads as well as activating large groups of supporters. We don't think you should stop your progress because of the pandemic. Let us help you get across the finish line!
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Riverside Chapter Update: Mike Taylor
Riverside County Chapter President Division President at Pardee Homes
BIA Riverside Chapter
Greetings from the Riverside County Chapter of the Building Industry of Southern California! As we head into the summer months, let us provide you a quick review of this past spring and a look ahead to the summer and fall. While COVID-19 tried to shut us all down, our chapter remained active and focused. We transitioned our governmental affairs events to a series of very successful webinars, giving builders and associates the opportunity to discuss a variety of topics, while also giving us the opportunity to provide visibility to our sponsors and partnership program partners. First, we met virtually with Congressman Ken Calvert on the federal response to the pandemic. Then we engaged senior City and County officials from around Riverside County in a series of virtual meetings learning how we can all work together in new innovative ways to keep project permitting, construction and inspections on track. Special thanks to Representative Ken Calvert and to our partners at the cities of Indio, Lake Elsinore, Menifee, Riverside and the County of Riverside for their participation and commitment to keeping our industry moving forward. As we all begin the process of reopening our business and society in new and different ways, your BIA is doing the same. We are committed to finding ways to provide builder and associate networking opportunities in a safe and fun fashion, while also finding original and innovative ways to highlight and promote our
members who support the partnership program. Our events team is working to schedule a member mixer later in the summer, so look for a calendar date soon. Additionally, our much-anticipated spring golf tournament has been rescheduled to October 26th at the Tukwet Canyon Golf Club in Beaumont. This is an outstanding venue with two 18 -hole championship courses that will make for an exceptional event. A special thank you to our chapter committees for their continued hard work and commitment. They all continue to put in numerous volunteer hours to help move us forward. Our membership committee working to attract and retain members in the digital environment and they have kept our chapter membership strong. The golf committee has been navigating all of the new health regulations to host our annual golf tournament. Our committee members have all been invaluable leaders during this challenging time, thank you. Finally, let us share our gratitude and thanks for the Riverside County Chapter Board of Directors. None of them signed up to lead an organization during a global pandemic, but lead they have! They continue to engage on critical industry issues throughout the region and remain strong advocates for homebuilding in Riverside County. For more information please contact BIA Riverside Chapter Executive Officer Lou Monville at EO@riversidebia.org
Member Highlight: Boudreau Pipeline Corporation We Dig the Future!
WE DIG BIA... We Dig the Future! Boudreau Pipeline, we dig ditches for a living. We install sewer, water, storm drains and site infrastructure throughout Southern California. We work on residential, multifamily and commercial projects for the major developers and general contractors. The company has been around since 1997 and has enjoyed the highs and the lows over the past 23 years. We joined the BIA back in the “great recession”. I was looking for a way to connect with industry leaders because most of my connections had left the industry for other career paths. Networking was my motivation for joining the association. The cruise ship had been nearly decimated back then but as many of you know, the industry is a resilient bunch. The people were fantastic, and the networking opportunities have always been an excellent way to connect with builders, associates and other trades. I was asked to join the Governing Board back in 2010. I willingly accepted and that’s when my education on the value of the BIA truly began. I was shocked at the relentless battles that were being fought locally and statewide that negatively impact our development industry. The challenges that had to be overcome to build a project in California are immense and never seem to let up. The advocacy leg of the BIA is the most important weapon in the arsenal and brings the most value to all of our members.
Alan Boudreau President Boudreau Pipeline
As trade partners and associate members, it is our obligation to support the industry that provides for all our employees and their families. Without a strong voice advocating for our industry, projects will be stifled, home prices will keep increasing and the American dream will get further from the reach of many Californian’s. Support the industry that we all love and most of all you must participate. Join a committee, volunteer your time and you will be rewarded. We are going through another challenging time right now so we all need to come together.
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
Recent & Ongoing Activities
The Henderson Law Firm
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF GOVERNMENTS BIASC’s staff and consultants have been working with the officers and staff of the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) on important matters concerning regional transportation and plan use planning. Under state law, SCAG is responsible for regional transportation planning throughout the sixcounty area that includes all of Imperial, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, Santa Bernardino, and Ventura Counties (the same counties that BIASC serves). Because of recent California law changes, SCAG’s work increasing affects the land use decisions made at the local jurisdiction and project levels. SCAG has been working over the past year to complete two, major periodic tasks. One is the 4-year update of the SCAG region’s “Sustainable Communities Strategy” (SCS). The other is the 8-year update and allocation of the SCAG region’s Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA – pronounced “ree-nah”). Together, these updates will influence development and homebuilding opportunities throughout the SCAG region in the years ahead.
First, SCAG is now working to complete the updated SCS for the region. Since 2012, pursuant to state law (Senate Bill 375, 2008), every four years, SCAG has created and revised its SCS as an integral part of updating a federally required Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) for the SCAG region. The SCS is a 25-year projection of where new household and job growth should occur within the 197 jurisdictions within the SCAG region (191 cities and 6 counties). The projections are based on SCAG’s view of what would be the best policies concerning the actual placement of such growth within each locality (using agreedupon jurisdictional growth projections); and they aim to substantially reducing per capita greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions from light trucks and personal cars. In May 2020, BIASC was instrumental in seeking a four-month postponement in SCAG’s consideration of its updated, 2020-2045 SCS, which SCAG has labeled “Connect SoCal.” BIASC and other leading business groups secured the postponement so that SCAG could address three issues:
1. BIASC discovered that the proposed SCS did not project the 2045 realization of fully entitled projects. Under state law, this could put those projects at risk of the reopening of GHG mitigation requirements. BIASC secured SCAG’s steps to better reflect such entitlements in the SCS before its adoption; 2. BIASC sought and secured an evaluation of where (spatially) and to what extent or degree the proposed SCS might be inconsistent with locally approved general plans; and 3. BIASC sought and secured an initial evaluation of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the land use projections. SCAG plans to consider its revised SCS (Connect SoCal) at its September 3, 2020 regional council meeting. BIASC will continue to work with SCAG to improve its land use projections, and with its members to assure that the ramifications of the SCS are appreciated and managed. The second important and current SCAG effort is the RHNA allocation for the region. Under state law, every eight years, California’s Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) dictates to SCAG a regional housing needs assessment (RHNA), which is the number of additional housing units that HCD believes are needed in the region. SCAG is then responsible for “allocating” the RHNA among the jurisdictions within the region, and the local governments are thereupon required to take steps to “make available” – through the zoning or rezoning of vacant or readily-convertible land – enough building
sites on which developers could potentially build such housing units. SCAG is poised to finalize its RHNA allocation in several months; and the allocation is both highly controversial and impactful. HCD’s new RHNA for the SCAG region is for nearly 1.4 million new housing units – nearly three time larger than the last cycle’s SCAG RHNA. Recent state law changes were aimed at increasing affordable housing; and they mandate that local governments must make available (through zoning or rezoning) more high-density homebuilding sites (for example, at least 30 units/acre in urbanized areas). SCAG has tentatively decided to allocate a large amount of the region’s RHNA burden to relatively mature cities closer to the coast. Although an appeals process is pending (local jurisdictions can appeal their respective RHNA allocations), it is foreseeable that mature coastal cities generally will be compelled under state law effectively to “up-zone” more urban land for high-density housing. SCAG’s SCS and RHNA policies, taken together, favor high-density housing in areas with frequent bus service (every 15 minutes during peak hours), and disfavor housing production in all other neighborhoods – even within existing communities, and in new planned towns, in new suburban communities, and in “edge” development. BIASC continues to advocate on behalf of its members and a broad regional coalition for more and better housing production options – especially more economically feasible ones, and to help its members to navigate successfully through these policies.
HOME. NOW MORE THAN EVER. We build community, and we’re stronger together, even when we’re apart. Homes and neighborhoods that offer value, contentment and community. These are the things we get excited about – now and throughout our rich history.
TRIPointeHomes.com/SoCal No information or material herein is to be construed to be an offer or solicitation for sale. Not all features and options are available in all homes. Unless otherwise expressly stated, homes do not come with hardscape, landscape, or other decorator items. Any photographs or renderings used herein reflect artists’ conceptions and are for illustrative purposes only. Our name and the logos contained herein are registered trademarks of TRI Pointe Group, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries. CA Contractor’s License No. 1018637. CA DRE License No. 02025660. © 2020 TRI Pointe Homes, Inc., a member of the TRI Pointe Group. All rights reserved. 08/20
BIA Sacramento Government Affairs
To Say The 2020 Legislative Year In Sacramento Is Like No Other, Is A
Huge Understatement BY: Chris Kahn, Legislative Advocate to the Building Industry Association of Southern California June 30, 2020 When Governor Gavin Newsom released his proposed 2020-21 State Budget on January 10, 2020, the State of California was experiencing a strong economy with an unprecedented budget surplus and reserves. In two months, all of that turned completely around and the Governor and the Legislature were faced with both a health and fiscal crisis of unprecedented proportions. The State may have experienced a greater fiscal crisis in 2008-09, but they have never had to deal with it in conjunction with a world-wide pandemic. In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Legislature convened on March 16th to pass four budget bills as part of the state’s immediate response to the pandemic. These bills gave the Governor immediate spending authority to respond to the Covid-19 health crisis. They also met to deliberate next steps for the legislative body, and how they should continue their course of business given the health concerns but
need for legislative action to address pressing budget and policy issues. They had discussed options for conducting remote voting, but no mechanism exists in our State Constitution. The Legislature recently passed Assembly Constitutional Amendment 25 which will let the voters decide in November if remote voting should be allowed in the future when the State or federal government is in a State of Emergency. The initial COVID-19 response budget bills included up to $1 billion from the General Fund that will finance any activities related to Governor Newsom’s state of emergency proclamation, which included hospital equipment and beds, housing for the homeless, and more. There was additional intent language intended to help small businesses, individuals, and nonprofits that are impacted. This gave the Governor spending authority to respond to the pandemic as he saw fit. The Legislature passed a joint resolution to adjourn and for 44 days, were out of session. Much to the concern of Legislators, the Governor took center stage and control of the State’s Covid-19 response with
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little coordination with the Legislature. The Governor issued numerous Executive Orders to deal and respond to the many important issues brought on by the pandemic. We were very appreciative of the Governor including homebuilding in the definition of essential services and critical infrastructure and we worked with him and his office to fine tune that commitment as time went on. While scheduled hearings, committees and floor sessions were postponed, Legislators and their staffs tried to work remotely during this period, but with the budget authority given to the Governor and the Executive Orders he was able to issue, there did not appear to be a role for the Legislature while they were forced to be out of session. Given the State and Sacramento county’s ‘stay at home’ guidelines, the Capitol building was officially closed, and only essential official business was permitted. We worked with the Governor’s office to halt regulations, especially at the Water Board and CARB levels, that make it difficult if not impossible for business to comply while the State is operating in a Covid-19 State of Emergency. We were successful in stopping a troublesome regulation that would have made the general construction permit unworkable when it came to stormwater management. We continue to work to stop the implementation of the Vehicle Miles Traveled analysis (VMT) as part of CEQA. And we continue to work with CBIA and other business orientated statewide associations, (AGC, Cal Chamber, CBPA, Realtors) and the Governor’s office to provide some relief and economic stimulus to keep the economy moving rather than coming to a stop. The California State Assembly came back into session on May 4th. The Senate returned on May 11th. It is very unusual for the Assembly and Senate to return on separate dates. They normally operate on a joint legislative calendar, that had to be revamped in terms of policy committees, fiscal committees, and floor deadlines to pass the budget and other bills for the
2020 legislative session. Upon their return, Legislators were strongly advised to dramatically reduce their bill packages. Committee Chairs in both houses looked to only set Covid-19 response bills, or bills that have public safety or budget implications. Bill loads were reduced. Hearings have been held in larger Committee rooms and the Senate and Assembly floors were also used for hearings to allow for social distancing. The State Capitol has reopened to limited public access. Lobbying has become very challenging in the Covid-19 world. Meetings with Legislators and staff are conducted on Zoom or conference calls. No meetings are allowed in the Capitol and very limited public testimony is allowed in person on bills heard in Committees. Most testimony is taken over the phone. The Assembly is currently on summer recess, returning on July 13th. The Senate adjourns July 2 for their summer recess. They return as well on July 13th and will operate on the same calendar as the Assembly until adjournment on August 31st. On May 14th the Governor unveiled his “May Revise” to his January budget. Given the Covid-19 crisis, he was forced to completely re-write his January budget. The Governor in just a few months, has gone from proposing a 2020-21 State Budget that anticipated a strong economy, strong revenues and opportunities to augment and create new programs, to a proposed budget during a global economic crisis caused by Covid-19. The Governor’s May budget canceled most of the new initiatives proposed in the January budget, canceled and reduced spending included in the 2019 budget, drew down on reserves, borrowed form special funds and “temporarily” increases revenues. It called for a 10% cut of state worker salaries, and called for additional cuts to address the budget gap. Those cuts are “triggered” to be removed if federal relief is provided to the State.
The Governor was forced to work off a current and budget year shortfall of roughly $54 billion. He proposes to close this deficit by utilizing part of the State’s rainy day fund and other budget reserves (16% of the solution) , utilizing money received by the federal CARES Act (15%), utilizing deferral in payments, internal borrowing and transfers (19%), cuts (26%), revenue increases (8%), canceling expansions and state employee 10% salary cut (16%). The tax increases proposed by the Governor included suspending not operating losses for 2020, 2021 and 2022 for “medium and large businesses,” and limiting business incentive tax credits from offsetting more than $5 millions of tax liability for 2020-2022. The Governor’s revised budget included $750 million to establish the California Access to Housing Fund. Shortly after the Governor’s stay at home order, he created Project Roomkey to provide safe isolation motel rooms for the State’s homeless population. $100 million was initially allocated to local governments to reduce the spread of Covid-19. An additional $50 million was provided to the Department of Social Services to secure hotel and motel rooms and acquire trailers to safely house homeless at risk due to Covid-19. After the Governor submitted his revised budget, the Legislature then crafted a new budget with some important differences. After passing a framework of a budget to meet the June 15th Constitutional deadline, the Legislature has worked with the Governor, and passed a final budget that was signed today, in time to start of the new fiscal year which begins on July 1st. The budget passed on June 15th relied heavily upon the receipt of federal funds to deal with a $54 billion budget shortfall. After negotiations with the Governor, the final budget relies upon updated baseline and forecast adjustments to revenue and expenditures with specified triggers should revenue not materialize. The budget brings in revenue by accepting the
Governor’s tax increases proposed in May, accounting for $4.4 billion of “new” revenue for the budget year. K-12 education is sparred cuts in the budget, with $12 billion of spending deferred. Health programs are also sparred cuts. The budget does assume optimistic enrollment and cost projection in Medi-Cal to save approximately $1 billion. UC and CSU will see close to a billion in cuts unless federal funding materializes. State workers, rather than receiving a 10% pay cut, will receive 2 furlough days per month which will result in $2.8 billion in savings. Covid-19 has dramatically changed the legislative dynamic and budget dynamic in Sacramento. The Governor and the Legislature will need to enact another budget in August. Since the federal and state tax filing deadline has been moved to July 15th, the Governor will need to revise the budget he just signed today because the State will not know its actual revenue position until after July 15th. They will have to repeat the process outlined above. In later July or early August, the Governor will put out a revision to the budget he just signed, after the State knows how much revenue they have taken in for the previous year and the first half of 2020. The Legislature will then spend most of August passing a second revised budget along with the hundreds of bills that are left for the 2020 legislative session. The last month of session is always a chaotic time under normal circumstances. There is a huge push to get bills passed in a short period of time, at a time where the State is dealing with wildfire season, and other unforeseen situations that arise. Layered on the normal course of business is this unprecedented pandemic, that has put the State and the global economy in turmoil. The focus in Sacramento will continue to be on the budget and the Covid-19 response. And we still don’t know if the state’s economy will fully open up, and if we will move into phase 3 and 4 or have to backtrack to earlier phases. There are many reasons to be optimistic that things will improve. The Governor
and the Legislature have had the last 4 months to learn how to operate in the Covid-19 environment. The life science industry are making breakthroughs on treatments and we may see a vaccine by the end of the year. To say we have not seen anything like this in State government in California is an understatement, but as we have gotten through the early stages, at least we can say that Government is functioning and we have opportunities to get things done that can help the economy, help homebuilding in the State, and function in this Covid-19 world.
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2020 was to be the year of housing production. That was the promise by many of California’s legislative leaders at the beginning of the year. The Governor made this priority clear in his State of the State address, focused solely on homelessness and housing. The Senate, in January, was poised to push housing production with a vote on SB 50 by Senator Weiner. That all changed. The Senate defeated SB 50 and on March 4th, the Governor declared the state of emergency for the COVID-19 pandemic. After the failure of SB 50, Senate Pro Tem, Toni Atkins, committed to promoting legislation to make housing production a top priority and key to California’s economic recovery. In May she announced a legislative package to, “… streamline existing housing approval processes …, focus on proposals that would reduce the workload of local planning departments, increase the availability of affordable housing, and build on policies that would accelerate job growth and economic development.” Below are the Senate housing bills and the position taken by CBIA: • SB 902 (Wiener): Allows local governments to pass a zoning ordinance that is not subject to CEQA for projects up to 10 units, if they are located in transit-rich, job-rich areas, or urban infill sites. Position: Support
• SB 995 (Atkins): Provides CEQA relief by expanding the existing AB-900 process for Environmental Leadership Development Projects for housing projects, particularly affordable housing. Position: Possible Support-No position • SB 1085 (Skinner): Enhances existing Density Bonus Law by increasing the number of incentives provided to developers in exchange for providing more affordable units. Position: Housing Creator • SB 1120 (Atkins): Builds off state Accessory Dwelling Unit law that allows for at least three units/parcel; further encourages small-scale neighborhood development spearheaded by homeowners by creating a ministerial approval process for duplexes and lot splits that meet local zoning, environmental and tenant displacement standards. Position: Possible Support-No position • SB 1385 (Caballero): Streamlines the ministerial approval of housing projects on land zoned for office or retail commercial use when the site has been vacant or underutilized for at least three years and the project meets a number of existing requirements for by-right housing. Position: Support
• SB 1410 (Caballero): SB 1410 provides eviction protection to tenants unable to make payments during the COVID-19 pandemic by providing residential landlords and mobile-home park owners financial tax incentives to keep tenants housed. Creates a mechanism to allow tenants to pay their unpaid rent to the State starting in 2024, and allows them to work with the Franchise Tax Board to have unpaid rent reduced or forgiven. Position: Support In June, the Assembly also announced its housing production bills that would increase the number of housing units and expedite the housing approval process: • AB 725 (Wicks): Increases the amount of land zoned for moderate-income households. Allows more neighborhoods to add to the housing stock in a cost-effective manner and accommodate multiple income levels. Position: Neutral • AB 1279 (Bloom): Increases housing production by allowing denser and taller developments in areas that have good jobs and schools and are not at risk of gentrification. Position: Critical Watch-no position • AB 1851 (Wicks): Eliminates hurdles in the approval process for faith-based organizations and other non-profits to developing affordable housing on parking lots and excess land. Position: Critical Watch-no position
• AB 2323 (Friedman): Ensures that CEQA streamlining for housing projects works as intended, and that well-planned housing near transit and jobs is not delayed unnecessarily. Position: Support • AB 2345 (Gonzalez): Creates more affordable and market-rate housing by increasing the density bonus and number of incentives granted under the existing Density Bonus Law. Position: Support • AB 3040 (Chiu): Allows cities and counties to receive a specified credit towards meeting their RHNA for rezoning single-family neighborhoods to allow four units per parcel. Position: Critical Watch-no position • AB 3107 (Bloom): Permits housing development in commercially zoned areas if the housing development contains at least 20% affordable housing. Position: Support • AB 3279 (Friedman): Revises CEQA litigation procedures by (a) reducing the deadline for a court to commence hearings from one year to 270 days, (b) allowing a lead agency to decide whether a plaintiff prepares the administrative record, and (c) authorizing a court to issue an interlocutory remand. Position: Support
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Union Contractors Keeping SoCal & BIASC STRONG! As California continues to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, it is an undisputed fact that construction of already-needed housing will lead us back to the strong economy we enjoyed prior to Governor Gavin Newsom’s Executive Order on March 19th, mandating all residents to stay-at-home. Thankfully, the Governor astutely exempted construction workers; explicitly deeming them as essential and recognizing housing construction as critical infrastructure vital to the social and economic survival of the state. It is the existing and overwhelming strong demand for market-rate, affordable/senior, and homeless transitionary housing that will likely guarantee a seamless transition back to normality in everyday life. Union construction consists of 400,000 workers and 60,000 apprentices across the state, and the companies that employ them are a significant workforce cluster during the crisis. These contractors will be in prime position to receive a much larger share of the work in the post-COVID era of housing construction. BIASC is the only building industry organization with a signatory contractor division. The Labor Department and its Union Contractors Council represent almost 50 contractors in binding Master Labor Agreement partnerships with six unions (Carpenters, Cement Masons, Iron Workers, Laborers, Operating Engineers, and Teamsters.) The contractors, who may be signatory to just one or up to all six unions, have been as busy as ever during the state of emergency, building critical housing or infrastructure directly linked to housing developments throughout
Jordan Brandman BIASC Labor Relations
southern California. And the Department has been working tirelessly providing members with contract compliance, grievance, and trust funds representation services; and most importantly, COVID-19 worker safety guidance as more projects come online. The Department has also been proactively pursuing opportunities to add membership and broaden current members signatory representation. Every hour a signatory member employee works a job, income is generated for BIASC through contractor contributions to the Industry Advancement Fund(s). This has become BIASC’s 4th highest source since the pandemic began. Several current members with signatory relationships with just one or two of the six unions we represent have approached us to assist them in expanding their relationship to up to four unions. Moreover, nonmember contractors are contacting us, inquiring about signatory contractor membership with the Association. This is good not only in fostering a more conducive housing construction environment, it is also helping secure the Association’s fiscal health through job hours generated increases. As we make the eventual transition from emergency to economic recovery mode, we can be reassured that the union signatory contractors that BIASC represents are not only an integral piece to the economic recovery of our region, but they also continue to play a crucial role in sustaining BIASC and making it even stronger going forward.
Stronger Together As someone new to the Building Industry Association of Southern California, one of the many things I have quickly come to admire is the resilience and strength of this industry. We are amidst some of the most uncertain times in recent history, and the impact of COVID-19 has forced the home building industry to endure quite a bit of change in just a few short months. Everything from the building, to the home touring, financing, and settlement processes have been affected. Regardless of the obstacles faced, solutions have been found rather seamlessly. Whether that means transitioning into contactless inspections, or hosting virtual open houses, the home building industry has taken these challenges in stride. Over the last four months, I have personally reached out to hundreds of BIASC members. One thing has stuck out to me from the very beginning, and that is the unity this association has. Learning how your membership helped grow your business, and how close some of you have become with other members made me realize just how strong this association is. BIASC has always embodied the phrase “stronger together,” however that is truer now more than ever. Our members are our priority, and our goal is to provide each of you with the support, tools, and connections needed to be successful in today’s marketplace. I want to thank those of you who took the time to speak with me, as well as those who participated in our Membership/Events Survey. The feedback you provide is essential in communicating how we as an association can best support you. While BIASC offers many benefits and services to support our members, the full value of a BIA membership can only be realized when members are committed to active participation within the association. Participation goes
Kaitlin Radcliff BIASC Director of Membership
far beyond attending in-person events– this includes serving on councils and committees, sponsoring industry events and webinars, attending membership meetings, working collaboratively with fellow members, and developing relationships to build and maintain a successful business. A great place to start getting involved is with one of our councils or committees. These are tight-knit groups of passionate, industry leading members who come together to create meaningful change within their specialty. Since these are smaller, niche groups, they by nature lend themselves to more intimate networking opportunities. Council and committee meetings are typically held in-person; however, they have not missed a beat during these times and have remained strong in meeting virtually. Another great way to get involved is to get out there! We want our members to thrive, and we know part of that comes from deliverable advertising opportunities that increase brand exposure and generate leads. BIASC is continuously exploring innovative partnership opportunities, and we do our best to maintain a “members first” mentality in all that we do. Thank you for your continued support of the Building Industry Association of Southern California. Although the immediate future may seem unclear at times, we remain confident that we will emerge from this stronger than ever. Our members are the pulse of our association, and our team is here to be a resource for you. If you need anything from BIASC or any of our four chapters, please feel free to reach out to me directly. Thank you again for your loyal membership with BIASC, I look forward to meeting each of you in person in the future!
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MEMBER SPOTLIGHT PLEASE JOIN US IN RECOGNIZINGÂ RELIABLE WHOLESALE LUMBER
Please join us in recognizing our BIASC Member Reliable Wholesale Lumber, Inc. Immediately following the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic in March, the team at Reliable Wholesale Lumber began collecting mask donations from industry members to help curb the shortage of masks for medical workers. The Reliable Wholesale Lumber team held a mask drive at each of their locations and donated over 3,300 mask donations to local hospitals. We thank BIASC Governing Board Member and Reliable Wholesale Lumber Executive Vice President Operations & Sales Randall Richards and his team for their continued membership over the years and for giving back to the community in a time of need.
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HomeAid OC : HomeAid Orange County is hosting their annual fundraising event, The Show Must Go On, September 18th, 2020 at 4 PM. This event includes a variety of elements including a week-long Online Silent Auction (open September 10th - 17th, 2020), opening entertainment, fun drawings/prizes, the donation of HomeAid’s Wahoo’s themed Project Playhouse that will be donated to H.I.S. House, a local non-profit serving underprivileged children, and the recognition of several local philanthropic heroes: Lennar Homes, Wahoo’s Fish Taco, Oliver Jones, The Chang Family Foundation, Reliable Wholesale Lumber, and Community Action Partnership of Orange County- OC Food Bank. BIA members include, Lennar Homes and Reliable Wholesale Lumber: • Lennar Homes has been a longstanding builder partner of HomeAid and their work was instrumental in the creation of our Essentials Builders for Babies event and Essentials Diaper Drive. Lennar is the Builder Captain on one of our housing developments currently progress: Samueli Academy Housing, a residence hall for students of the Samueli Academy, a handful of which are foster students who commute a great distance to attend the school. Additionally, Lennar Southern California has helped to establish relationships with other HomeAid chapters and Lennar offices across the U.S. They continue to pioneer charity work in the building industry through their frequent Lennar Acts of Caring days. • Reliable Wholesale Lumber is a longtime supporter who donates endless amounts of hours, labor and materials to our organization, our agency partners and our community. Their generosity within our communities is enormous and spread widely throughout Southern California. They also not only stored our Wahoo’s themed playhouse since 2008, but have also restored it for us as well. Their work in our community it critical to the building industry.
Home Aid OC Development Director
“HomeAid’s work to end homelessness is not possible without the generosity of those who serve our mission. We are thrilled to honor these companies and individuals for the gifts they provide not only our organization, but the entire community as we support the most vulnerable in Orange County,” says Gina R. Scott, Executive Director. The Show Must Go On will help raise $210,000 to impact their mission to end homelessness by building new lives for homeless families and individuals through housing and community outreach.
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BUILDING INDUSTRY SHOW ANNOUNCEMENT
Finance Forum Set for Fall, BIS Moves to Spring As COVID-19 continues to transform the ways we do business, live events have been dramatically impacted. Each year, we eagerly anticipate welcoming you to our annual Building Industry Show (BIS). But, as with all other gatherings of that kind, we are reevaluating how best to bring people together in our industry to share experiences and best practices. To that end, we are shifting the physical BIS to the spring (March 31 - April 1, 2021). Our plan is to convene the always highly anticipated conference, trade show and golf tournament at that time. However, in order to continue providing valuable opportunities for learning and thought leadership, we are excited to announce our Housing Finance and Innovation Forum on October 7, 2020. This online event will offer several national-level presenters with deep insights into these vital aspects of housing and home building, including representatives of major government agencies and leading corporations. We also invite our BIASC partners to tap their annual sponsorship funds to help support this live production. In addition, through a partnership with the Internet Marketing Association, Forum attendees can attend the IMA IMPACT 20 virtual conference on Oct. 2 at no additional charge. Under the theme of “The Year of Reinvention,” it will focus on moving ahead, preparing for new opportunities, and setting that process in motion in the months to come. Mark your calendar! You won’t want to miss these timely and informative events designed to keep you informed on the latest trends and opportunities in our industry. For more information, please contact BIASC Vice President of Events Laura Barber at email@example.com.
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The Greater Sales & Marketing Council has launched a new website with a fresh design and streamlined navigation. Our website upgrade, powered by the help of Get Community, Inc., makes it easier than ever to submit applications for Quarterly Sales Awards and Top Producer Honors. Sales Professionals who are finalists or recipients of a Quarterly Sales Award are then eligible to enter the GSMC’s annual SoCal MAME Awards. It is a priority of GSMC to honor our frontline heroes who are out in the field every day selling homes.
Dottie Sweeney 2020 Greater Sales and Marketing Council President Toll Brothers, Inc.
Although 2020 has not been what any of us had expected, it has given our board of directors time to thoughtfully deliver on new benefits for GSMC members. We can’t wait to roll out these programs this year and help our members and industry continue to succeed.
Check out GSMC’s new website today at www.GreaterSMC.com
“Our members are what make our council thrive,” said Dottie Sweeney, president of GSMC and Vice President | Western Region Account Management for Toll Brothers. “During these unprecedented times, we wanted to ensure that we are providing the best possible value to our membership, and it starts with a great resource that hosts all the information they could possibly need. Our motto is ‘Strength in Numbers’ and we want to make that possible, even if we can’t be together in person.” In addition to our new application process, GSMC will be releasing new features such as a Members in Transition program, exclusive coffee chats with Max Tipton and BJ Stewart award recipients, and more!
BIA ORANGE COUNTY
The BIAOC NextGen Committee hosted our second Virtual Site Tour on Wednesday, August 26th. The Virtual Site Tour was a special one - attendees enjoyed touring (or should we say soaring?) over Rancho Mission Viejo via incredible drone footage and photography, and enjoyed the first sneak peek at RMV’s newest village, Rienda! Three of Rancho Mission Viejo top leaders and a few of their consultants presented this legacy master planned community. Here are a few highlights: Executive VP of Community Development Paul Johnson spoke about the history and current state of the Ranch. Senior VP of Construction Jack Morales spoke about some of the construction challenges and current grading status of this large project. Senior VP of Design Kris Maher showcased some of the amenities in the first phase of Rienda, as well as some of the neighborhood layouts, architectural styles and market research.
BIAOC 2020 NextGen Chair
to learn about RMV from the visionaries themselves about the next village and overall vision of The Ranch. Thanks for joining me, your moderator, on the tour of RMV, and a big Thank You to each of our presenters who prepared such an interesting and informative tour. We are finding these Virtual Site Tours are a great way to ‘see’ communities we may not normally get to due to distance, with the added bonus of hearing from many of the experts who are bringing them to life at the same time! We are already planning the next one… keep an eye out for that announcement soon!
With lots of canyons and hills, consultants SWA Group’s Principal Drew Watkins and GMU’s Principal Aron Taylor highlighted some of the geotechnical features, urban design challenges and overall solutions they’ve overcome in creating Rienda. The tour concluded with Meritage Homes’ Land Acquisition Manager Tim Huynh (who is also the NextGen CoChair) who discussed the land purchase, design and review process, and some details about their neighborhood within Rienda - just one of many set to Grand Open mid 2022!
This virtual event was a one-of-a-kind opportunity
2020 Marks A Very
For The Council On Sage, As We Are
Formed by some of the most respected 55+ Players in the state and nation, the focus of this council has always been to educate and provide networking opportunities for people within the industry. The council offers monthly Breakfast events, including topics on: For Rent, For Sale, Age Qualified as well as Assisted Living. We are focused on every aspect within the industry, including Development, Architecture, Interior Design, Marketing & Management. The Council was originally called “Seniors Housing Council” and was recently re-branded to “The Council on Shaping Advancements in Generational Environments (SAGE),” more commonly referred to as the “Council on SAGE”.
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STAY TUNED FOR OUR UPCOMING EVENTS: September 2020 Webinar with Mitch Brown (Changes in the Senior Housing Market)
November 2020 Adrian Foley with Brookfield (Conversions of Mall Acquisitions) On behalf of the entire board, we would like to thank our annual Sponsors for their generous support throughout the year!
The Council started the year strong with an annual outlook, led by Ali Wolf (Meyer’s Research). In February, we were able to secure Jim Costello, CEO of BDX, who outlined cutting edge solutions for homebuilders; ranging from virtual reality to website Designs and mobile solutions. In April, we had to shift and go virtual: Mollie Carmichael (Meyer’s Research) opened up our series of educational webinars, explaining the shifting Consumer Trends due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In May, we hosted a panel of Industry Leaders (HPI Architecture and HRI Design) that outlined the challenges that we are facing today with Assisted Living Facilities and Nursing Homes.
Annie Gerard, Ike Balmaseda, Andy Bowden, Julia Moore, Joe Hammond, Dave Pintar, Lisa Parish, Felesia Dailey, Melissa Auten, Rian Graber, Valerie Hardman, Katja Martinez, Cynthia Cook, Marissa Feliciano, Gina Nixon.
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