By Camryn Sanchez | Arizona Capitol Times
The Senate killed a bill with some bipartisan opposition– and a hint of bipartisan support– on Monday that would have drastically cut down on zoning restrictions statewide in the sponsor’s hopes of increasing Arizona’s affordable housing supply.
Sen. Steve Kaiser, R-Phoenix, sponsored the controversial bill that would make several significant changes to housing law statewide, including putting shot clocks on development proposal review, cutting parking requirements and protecting accessory dwelling units. He said the bill will come back somehow this session.
“Wouldn’t it be amazing if your starter home, you could get a starter home for 150,000 bucks or 200,000 bucks?” Kaiser told the chamber. “And you could start building equity and move up to that next bigger home and go from there? That’s the American Dream that we’re robbing from so many young people right there. And then we’re trapping middle aged people in their homes, and then we are making our seniors homeless because they have no choice but to get forced out.”
According to the Arizona housing groups, the state needs 270,000 new homes and Arizona’s rents are more than 15% above the national average.
The final vote on Senate Bill 1117 was 9-20 with one not present. Kaiser changed his “yes” vote to a “no” at the end to get the bill reconsidered after a lengthy debate.