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Facebook commits $1B for California housing

Facebook Inc. pledged to commit $1 billion over the next decade to help address the affordable housing crisis in California.

The social media company partnered with California Governor Gavin Newsom and the State of California to help accelerate progress on the housing initiative, Facebook CFO David Wehner said in an Oct. 22 blog post. The money will go toward building up to 20,000 new housing units "to help essential workers such as teachers, nurses and first responders live closer to the communities that rely on them."

"State government cannot solve housing affordability alone, we need others to join Facebook in stepping up," Governor Newsom said.

The money includes $250 million partnership with the State of California for mixed-income housing on excess state-owned land. The company plans to use $150 million for the creation of affordable housing, including housing for the homeless, in the San Francisco Bay Area. The $1 billion figure also includes $225 million value of the land in Menlo Park that Facebook previously purchased and is now zoned for housing. The company plans to produce more than 1,500 units of mixed-income housing.

Furthermore, Facebook will spend $25 million to build housing for teachers and essential workers on public land for school districts in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties. The company said it set aside $350 million in funds for additional commitments to be used to support more affordable housing in communities where it has offices.