NCGA Opposes Assembly Bill 672
December 13, 2021
The NCGA is aligned with other opponents of AB 672 [Conversion of Publicly Owned Golf Courses to Affordable Housing].
For background, AB 672 (Public Golf Endangerment Act) provides $50 million in developer subsidies to redevelop California’s municipal golf courses into housing complexes.
This bill singles out golf and only golf for residential redevelopment among the state’s abundance of park, recreation, and open space activities. This bill proposes to only affect golf rather than putting ALL park, recreation and open space activities in play for redevelopment.
Municipal golf courses are part of the same park systems that provide soccer, baseball, swimming, picnicking, biking, pickleball, tennis, walking/riding trails and numerous other recreational amenities, the one difference being golf is generally more utilized than the rest. The one commonality being their indispensability in making possible high school and junior golf programs.
Golf courses preserve open space, sequester carbon, provide habitat, promote biodiversity and allow rainwater to get into groundwater basins. And in times of global warming and record high temperatures, golf courses reduce temperatures in their surrounding areas. Municipal golf courses provide these benefits almost entirely in densely packed urban environments where they are most needed, and in communities disproportionately identified as “park poor.” Converting them to hardscape exacerbates both problems.
The bill also negatively impacts jobs and access. Everything from employment at municipal courses and vendors’ contracts to equipment sales are put at risk by the Public Golf Endangerment Act.
With a vote in late January, the time for action is now if we have any hope of stopping the Public Golf Endangerment Act (AB-672). We encourage you to reach out to local representatives in advance of the vote at the end of January to let them know your concern/opposition.