California average home price 2½ times above the national average   

SCAG logo2016.jpg                    JAHN Bill scag 05-19.JPG 


Assess Regional Housing Needs


From SCAG President BILL JAHN:  

“Your voice is important in determining local housing need.”


No community is immune from the safety, health and economic consequences of the housing crisis.

Across California, the average home price is nearly 2½ times above the national average, while the average rent is nearly 50% higher than the rest of the country. More than 50% of households spend more than 30% of their paychecks on housing costs. 

While the Inland Empire (IE) is slightly better-off than our coastal neighbors, most of our residents are on the outside looking in when it comes to buying or renting a home that meets their needs. According to the California Association of Realtors, just 42% of households in the IE can afford to purchase a median-priced home. That compares to a U.S. average of 55%. Rental costs, meanwhile, are rising at nearly double the average rate nationally.


Let’s be clear! This is about more than simply an affordable roof over our heads. Access to housing impacts our ability to attract businesses and create jobs. Higher housing costs limit what families can spend on food, clothing, healthcare and other essentials. That, in turn, hurts sales tax revenues and the ability of municipalities to fund essential services. Public safety, code enforcement and even our schools feel the strain when housing demand overpowers supplies.


All of which brings us to RHNA – the Regional Housing Needs Assessment – the process by which the state determines immediate and future housing needs. California requires that every city and county adequately plan to ensure that adequate housing is available for households across every income level – and RHNA is the mechanism for making that happen.


The process starts with public outreach and, eventually, a regional needs assessment sent down by the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). Later this month, HCD will provide the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) and other regional planning organizations across the state with an assigned total for their jurisdictions as part of the next eight-year RHNA cycle, which runs from October 2021 through October 2029.


At this point, we don’t know what that number will be for the six counties that comprise SCAG. In June 2019, our Regional Council has proposed a regional need of 430,289 new units. 


Whatever that number winds up being, it is SCAG’s legal responsibility to then allocate need on an individual community basis to cities and unincorporated areas within its jurisdiction. Those local allocations can be based on a variety of factors, including population, access to transit, income levels and so on. 


Over the past several months, SCAG has offered three different options for determining local need, and is asking for your help in determining which makes the most sense.


Tuesday, August 20, SCAG produced a webcast of the public hearing taken at SCAG Headquarters, located in Los Angeles:


This hearing also provided videoconferencing at SCAG’s regional offices, including the SBCTA location. Due to limited space available, a RSVP by email was requested at: 


A series of public hearings is scheduled this month, including one here in the IE on Tuesday, August 27, at the San Bernardino County Transportation Authority (SBCTA) board room, 1170 W. Third St. The hearing will be held from 6:00 until 8:00 P.M.


In addition to the hearings, SCAG is encouraging residents and stakeholders to submit written comments to:

or by U.S. mail to: Southern California Association of Governments,

Attention: RHNA, 900 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 1700,

Los Angeles, CA 90017.

Comments will be accepted until 11:59 P.M. Friday, September 13th. 


Your input is extremely important! SCAG is committed to settling on the fairest methodology possible, and doing so, in an open and transparent process. More important, we’re taking the lead in addressing a housing crisis that stands as the single biggest threat to our quality of life here in the Inland Empire (IE) and throughout California. 


More information about the three options by visiting:   

As well as, questions about the public hearings, please email   


EDITOR’s Note:  Big Bear Lake NewsRoom will follow-up with updates to hearings, etc.


For previous Housing Crisis articles visit: 

Assemblyman JAY OBERNOLTE  aggressively deal with the housing issue now We cannot simply pass this off to the next generation to solve! 



 Edited by E T Russell  08-19