Lakewood has joined several other cities in jointly filing the first lawsuits against the State of California challenging the constitutionality of the SB 9 housing density law, which takes away traditional zoning authority from local communities, and forces cities to allow multi-family housing in single family residential neighborhoods.
Lakewood joined Rancho Palos Verdes as the first “general law” cities in the state to file suit this past Thursday. Their action comes on top of a similar suit filed by four “charter cities” (Redondo Beach, Torrance, Carson and Whittier). The two different lawsuits were required because communities with their own city charters and those who operate under the state’s “general law” for cities have slightly different legal grounds for filing their lawsuits, even though the essence of the two suits is the same.
“Lakewood is a diverse community where people can live the American Dream and purchase a single-family home on a modest-sized lot,” said Lakewood Mayor Steve Croft. “People of all cultural backgrounds and walks of life come to Lakewood because of this chance to live the American Dream. SB 9 threatens that by allowing developers to buy up properties and build duplexes, triplexes and more on single-family lots, creating overcrowded neighborhoods while preventing cities from requiring any onsite parking for the new residents. SB 9 threatens the quality of life for existing residents and neighborhoods.”
“We’re proud to work with the cities of Rancho Palos Verdes, Redondo Beach, Torrance, Carson and Whittier to bring this issue of SB 9 to the legal system for review. We hope that other cities will join us in protecting the right of local communities to have control over their own zoning and neighborhood quality of life decisions,” said Croft.