By Elizabeth Zach, RCAC staff writer
The numerous, massive wildfires – 100 of them at one point in late July – swarming across California are not only harming the environment and threatening lives but are also exacerbating the state’s affordable housing crisis.
This seems rather obvious, but perhaps a less appreciated component here is that rebuilding homes lost in the fires is also sending construction workers away from the very areas that would benefit from new home construction like the Bay Area.
According to a story by the Bay Area News Group and referring to a Buildzoom.com report, between 2005 and 2006, nearly 20 percent of California’s construction workforce exited the industry. More than 40 percent of California construction job postings are unfilled for at least six weeks, a national high.
California’s wine country is still affected by the fires that swept through the area last year.
“There’s still a pretty big shortage of skilled labor,” Alex Stewart, a client advocate at Buildzoom who is working with homeowners in Napa and Sonoma counties, told the Bay Area News Group. “It’s a pretty classic supply and demand.”