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Governor To Punish California Cities For Not Building New Homes

Sacramento (CBS13) — Governor Gavin Newsom is pledging to enhance California's housing supply goals by punishing cities that don't approve enough new homes.

"If we want a California for all we have to build housing for all," Newsom said.

In his State of the State address Tuesday, the new governor threatened to hold cities accountable for not acting on affordable housing goals.

"Two weeks ago the state of California sued the city of Huntington Beach for failing to meet its obligations on affordable housing," he said

Newsom called out 47 other cities for failing to approve new developments for growing populations, including the small rural town of Wheatland, represented by Republican Assemblyman James Gallagher.

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"Calling out different communities without knowing the full story that's not the right way to do it," said Gallagher (R-Wheatland).

Democratic lawmakers believe the governor's aggressive goal is key to tackling the bigger issue: soaring rents.

"In the San Fernando Valley prices are just out of control," said Jesse Gabriel (D-West San Fernando Valley).

Critics say homebuilding is slow across the state because of the costs of labor and construction materials. It's an issue Newsom says can also be part of the solution.

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"There is no way we can achieve our ambitious targets unless we train a skilled workforce that's big enough to meet the challenge and also make sure we have workers getting wages high enough to support their families," said Newsom.

To meet those demands, the Governor is asking city leaders to sit down with him next week in Southern California for what he called a "candid conversation." No more details have been provided about the meeting.

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