As California’s housing affordability crisis persists, understanding which laws or regulations might impede housing construction in high-cost areas is of vital importance. Entitlement data is necessary to inform how local and state land use regulatory tools are being applied in practice and to identify which types of proposed housing developments tend to move faster or slower through the planning review process. Analysis of entitlement data can identify issues of inequity or inefficiency in the first step of the residential development process.
But entitlement data is more than just a tool for policymakers to gauge a jurisdiction’s progress towards meeting its housing goals. Lack of entitlement data also directly impacts a jurisdiction’s ability to effectively conduct long-term planning strategies. Given the scarcity of planning resources, long-range strategies must be data-informed by current conditions. In other words, data can be a means to enable enforcement and oversight, but also a means to empower cities to meet their housing goals.
This policy brief details what our research team has learned about current data accessibility and provides recommendations on how to improve local data reporting and data maintenance to facilitate compliance with state housing laws and long-term planning strategies.