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California Churches Aid Affordable Housing: New Law Streamlines Development on Religious Land

Addressing Declining Attendance and Housing Shortages in Berkeley

(PHOTO: Claremont COURIER)

Ensuring Affordable Housing Among Church Conversions

In Berkeley churches in a neighborhood that used to have mostly Black people are becoming homes because fewer people are going to church according to CBS News. A new law in SB 4 California churches aid  turn into houses, giving them a way to deal with the problem of fewer people coming to church. An architect named Josiah Maddock turned the New Light Baptist Church into a fancy home while keeping some of its old features. This shows how things are changing with fewer people going to church but more focus on solving housing issues. People in the community worry about what these changes mean for who can afford to live there. A retired pastor named Barry Cammer hopes these new homes will be affordable for regular people not just rich ones. Some churches are teaming up with others to build affordable housing like the McGee Avenue Baptist Church. This shows that communities can work together to make sure everyone has a place to live. The new law SB 4 makes it easier for churches to help with the housing problem by allowing them to build homes on their land.

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UC Berkeley Expert Highlights Potential Impact of SB 4 in Addressing California’s Housing Shortage

David Garcia, who works at UC Berkeley thinks this new law could make a big difference in California. It opens up a lot of land for building homes which could help a lot of people who need somewhere to live. Even though fewer people go to church now Garcia sees a chance to use church land to help with the housing shortage. This shows how laws and communities can come together to solve big problems like not having enough places for people to live.

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