We develop innovative policy recommendations and spearhead legislative campaigns that enable more localized, just, and resilient economies. 

Active Campaigns

Oakland and Berkeley Worker Cooperative Ordinances  

Oakland is poised to be the first city in the country to preferentially contract with local worker cooperatives.


Save Seed Sharing Campaign 

A national campaign to reform state laws that threaten our seed commons and the right to share local seeds.


Past Campaigns

California Seed Democracy Act

Creating a clear legal space for seed sharing. 

Status: Passed in 2016


California Local Economies Securities Act

Creating opportunity for small businesses, farms, and renewable energy projects to raise money from local investors. 

Status: Stalled in 2016


California Worker Cooperative Act

Creating a worker cooperative legal entity and capital raising options that recognize the unique and valuable impact of worker coops. 

Status: Passed in 2015


California Neighborhood Food Act

Guaranteeing the rights of renters and HOA residents to grow their own food.

Status: Passed in 2014 


Act to Facilitate Creation of Cooperative Housing in California

Facilitating the development of cooperative housing. 

Status: Passed in 2014


California Homemade Food Act

Legaliziing certain types of home-based food enterprises. 

Status: Passed in 2012



U.S. CROWDFUND Act (Part of the JOBS Act)

Allowing businesses to raise capital through crowdfunding intermediaries.  

Status: Passed in 2012


Policy Reports & Recommendations



Policy Recommendations for Equitable Short-Term Rental Regulation

Short-term residential rentals, like those facilitated by online platforms including Airbnb, Homeaway, and Flipkey, have become a popular alternative to traditional hotels in recent years. A drastic increase in short-term rental (STR) activity has many cities feeling the negative cumulative impacts of STRs on housing prices and availability, neighborhood quality, and public revenues. STRs can also provide some benefits, including creating opportunities for income generation, diversifying travel options, and spreading tourism dollars to local residents and businesses. Our recommendations for equitable short-term rental regulation balance the potential benefits of STRs with the need for protection of important public interests.


Local Ordinance for the Promotion of Worker Cooperatives

Worker cooperatives create quality jobs, grow local wealth, and promote economic resilience. Local governments can be instrumental in fostering the development of worker cooperatives by removing several key barriers and providing essential technical, strategic, and financial support. We've drafted a worker cooperative development policy tailored to the city of Oakland, California, a perfect example of a city that could benefit from a thriving cooperative economy and everything that comes with it. The ordinance can be easily tailored to fit the needs of any U.S. city, and we welcome inquiries from cities wishing to adopt a similar policy. 


Policies for Shareable Cities: A Primer for Urban Leaders 

Policies for Shareable Cities is the first policy handbook of its kind. It includes over 30 recommended policies for how cities should regulate the true sharing economy in the areas of food, work, housing, and transportation. 






Ready to be a Policymaker in Your City or State?

We want you to make policy! To create economically resilient communities, we need to change or create millions of city, state, and federal laws. These new laws would remove barriers to and create incentives for local food production, renewable energy projects, local industry, worker-owned enterprises, shared housing, and other aspects of thriving communities.

Check out our Transformative Policymakers Program here.

More on the Law Center's Advocacy in California

  • The Law Center supports California bill to establish the Nutrition Incentives Matching Grants Program (AB 1321) to create incentives for recipients of nutrition assistance programs (eg CalFRESH, food stamps) to purchase fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts at California farmers' markets and small retailers. Read more about it here.
  • Sustainable Economies Law Center opposes bill to ban right of local government to tax short term rentals (AB 1220). Read our opposition letter here.


Yassi Eskandari - yassi [at] theselc.org

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