The Building Industry Association of Southern California (BIASC) and their Los Angeles/Ventura (LA/V) Chapter hosted the Economic Forecast & Housing Strategy Summit at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif. on April 25th. The event was co-hosted by Southern California Leadership Council (SCLC) and had over 200 registered attendees.
The event took place from 3pm – 8pm consisting of a library tour, all-regions board meeting, VIP Reception and concluded with a special guests panel featuring local elected representatives. In attendance were BIASC leadership and Chapter Presidents, along with Southern California’s top builders and landowners.
Former California Governor Pete Wilson, the 36th Governor of California, recorded a message for the audience stating Sacramento must reduce the regulatory burdens homebuilders face in order to reverse the state’s declining homeownership rates. “Ten years ago, 50% of Californians could afford a medium priced home, but now it’s less than half that, and each time the home affordability statistic drops another point, another swath of our population loses its hold on the American dream of ownership,” he said. “That is a tragedy, because it also means that all the economic and social benefits that come with home ownership have been lost for them.“
Wilson declared the declining affordability can be reversed by removing regulatory and litigation roadblocks and by finding new financing vehicles to replace redevelopment agencies. “The solution to the housing crisis can be summarized in two words: more production. It won’t be easy, but I sense that the tide is starting to turn, that the pendulum is starting to swing back in our direction,” he said.
Guests heard opening remarks from Los Angeles Supervisor Fifth District Kathryn Barger. The moderator of the event was Bill McReynolds, BIA LA/V Chapter President and Vice President of Land Acquisitions at Warmington Residential. Former Governor Gray Davis, the 37th Governor of California and Co-Chair of SCLC, was a highlighted speaker at the event on Wednesday. Christopher Thornberg, founder of Beacon Economics, provided insight into the 2022 building economic forecast and beyond.
“I was delighted to attend BIASC’s Economic Forecast to discuss California’s building successes, deficits and predictions for the future,” said Bill McReynolds. “California’s housing strategies are ever-changing and we have so many talented individuals behind the curtain who are contributing to the growth of this state. 2022 is when we need to pull back the curtain on overbearing regulations in order to set our path straight.”
The Land and Development Panel included:
- Greg Bielli, President and CEO, Tejon Ranch
- Mike Balsamo, Senior Vice President, Governmental Relations, Rancho Mission Viejo
- Randall Lewis, Senior EVP of Marketing, Lewis Group of Companies
- Nicole Murray, Division President, Shea Holmes
- Greg McWilliams, Chief Policy Officer and VP, Fivepoint
The Land and Development Panel set the tone for the evening by expressing the need for predictability to exist in order for land purchasing and building to continue successfully. The regulatory agencies need to be stopped from promulgating more rules and hurdles to get over to get away from the massive economic transformation forcing gentrification. All hands on deck are needed in order to get neighborhoods and quality of life back on track.
“Our Economic Forecast & Housing Strategy Summit provides invaluable information for our members and elected officials to better engage on housing solutions,” said BIASC CEO Jeff Montejano. “The growing large number of attendees for these leadership summit’s are outstanding and a clear indication about the growing need for better regional housing policies.”