Sen. Cortese’s Bills on Public Health, Economic Development & Affordable Housing Become Law

Today the Governor has signed three bills authored by Senator Dave Cortese (D-Silicon Valley) into law:


Signed into Law Today:

·      SB 564 - Santa Clara County Hospitals

·     SB 780 – Local Economic Development; Funding for Affordable Housing

·      SB 791 – California Surplus Land Unit

Previously Signed into Law:

·     SCR 18 - Compassionate California

·      SB 411 - Rights for Retirees

·      SB 461 - Unfair Competition Law Enforcement


SB 564 – “Santa Clara County Hospitals - will ensure that two critical public hospitals in Senate District 15 – the O’Connor Hospital (OCH) and Santa Clara Valley Medical Center (VMC) – can maintain access to health services for County residents while continuing their progress to meet seismic safety standards by extending the hospital seismic compliance deadline from July 1, 2022 to December 31, 2024, given the impact of COVID-19 on the County’s hospital system, paired with the County’s only recent acquisition of the O’Connor Hospital.

SB 564 will ensure that we keep Santa Clara County hospitals O’Connor and Valley Medical Center open and serving our community to the fullest extent possible,” says Senator Cortese.

Maintaining hospital operations and capacity is a critical issue for our community and this has been particularly important as demonstrated by the County of Santa Clara’s response to the COVID pandemic,” said County Executive Jeffrey V. Smith, M.D., J.D. “We deeply appreciate Senator Cortese authoring SB 564 on our behalf and are pleased that the Legislature has sent the bill to the Governor as it will help the County’s health system maintain its ability to serve our community while we continue retrofitting facilities to meet seismic requirements.”

California’s severe affordable housing crisis is ravaging local communities across the state. The pandemic has underscored the importance of safe and sustainable housing,” said Senator Cortese. “SB 780 and SB 791 will alleviate our incredibly high housing burdens in California by spurring the production of affordable housing to meet the incredibly high need that is currently going unmet.”

SB 780 – “Economic Development; Improvements to EIFD and CRIA Tax Increment Laws”: SB 780 will provide helpful clarifications to improve the functioning and usefulness of Special Tax Districts that are used by local governments to fund community infrastructure projects, local economic development, and affordable housing. Since the elimination of redevelopment agencies in 2011, the Legislature enacted several tax increment financing tools to support infrastructure, economic development and affordable housing in local communities. Enhanced Infrastructure Finance Districts (EIFDs) have emerged as the most flexible tool for local agencies considering infrastructure development. Community Revitalization Investment Authorities (CRIAs) have broader redevelopment powers and a focus on affordable housing, but are currently viewed as too cumbersome to establish and operate. Improvements to EIFD and CRIA statutes are needed to facilitate the use of these tools for infrastructure, redevelopment and affordable housing objectives.

The California Association for Local Economic Development said the following about SB 780: “On behalf of hundreds of economic developers across our state, the California Association for Local Economic Development thank Senator Cortese for his thoughtful leadership in listening to practitioner solutions for growing local economies and authoring SB 780. This legislation, which improves Enhanced Infrastructure Financing Districts and Community Revitalization Investment Authorities, gives California communities more effective tax increment financing tools for economic development, infrastructure, and affordable housing projects – critical investments needed in order to create a better future for our residents.”

Senator Cortese said the following about SB 780: “The need for creative ways to raise money for local development projects is greater than ever. The COVID-19 pandemic imposed immense pressure on local governments that were already financially unstable, and the housing crisis has left local governments scrambling for solutions to get affordable housing projects funded. Therefore, the revitalization of these economic development tools is well overdue.”

Learn more about SB 780 at this link.

SB 791 – “Affordable Housing; Surplus Land Unit”: SB 791 will expedite the construction of affordable housing on local government surplus land through the creation of the California Surplus Land Unit within the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD).  This unit that will give consultative and technical assistance to local agencies seeking to increase housing production on their surplus land. By requiring HCD to submit an annual report that provides the number and location of housing units assisted by the unit and what funds were used to finance those units, this bill also includes crucial data collection components to help the Legislature understand how we can better augment the unit’s work to effectively promote affordable housing production.

Senator Cortese said the following about SB 791: “It is time for the state to take a more active role in assisting with affordable housing development as efficiently and effectively as possible. While Californians continue to struggle to find secure housing, suitable sites remain vacant across the state. SB 791 provides a practical solution by establishing a unit that will give consultative and technical assistance to local agencies seeking to increase their affordable housing stock.”

Learn more about SB 791 at this link.

SB 791 authored was signed into law today at a News Conference hosted by Governor Newsom earlier today. A recording of today’s conference can be found at this link.


Learn more about Senator Cortese’s other bills signed into law at this link.


For more information, contact Tara Sreekrishnan, Office of Senator Dave Cortese, at 408 480 7833 or