Legislative Advocacy FY 2018

Federal

U.S. Congressional Briefing – April 30, 2018

The federal “Moving to Work”(MTW) program’s essential role in SDHC programs to address homelessness in the City of San Diego was the focus of SDHC President & CEO Richard C. Gentry’s presentation at a Congressional briefing held in the Rayburn House Office Building.

With MTW flexibility, SDHC has committed more than 3,600 federal rental housing vouchers to address homelessness with the “housing first” approach—to provide housing as quickly as possible, with supportive services as needed.

HOUSING FIRST – SAN DIEGO, SDHC’s homelessness action plan, includes federal rental assistance, innovative partnerships with San Diego State University and a local school that serves families with children that experience homelessness, as well as the investment of millions of dollars toward the creation of permanent supportive housing units.

Five additional speakers at the briefing addressed the results of a study of performance measures for MTW programs, as well as topics such as health care, improving educational outcomes of low-income children, rent reform, and increasing employment opportunities and economic self-sufficiency.

This briefing was co-hosted by the Council of Large Public Housing Authorities (CLPHA), National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO), and Public Housing Authorities Directors Association (PHADA).

U.S. Congressional Subcommittee Testimony – April 25, 2018

SDHC President & CEO Richard C. Gentry was among four speakers invited to testify to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services, Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance, at the “Hearing on HUD’s Role in Rental Assistance: An Oversight and Review of Legislative Proposals on Rent Reform.”

SDHC’s rent-reform initiative, Path to Success, was approved by HUD on June 21, 2011, in SDHC’s Fiscal Year 2012 MTW Annual Plan, and was implemented on July 1, 2013.

Mr. Gentry testified that San Diego’s experience has shown that rent reform—including setting minimum rents and utilizing calculations based on income ranges—effectively encourages rental assistance participants to become more financially self-reliant and provides the support they need to do so.

The San Diego model in SDHC’s Path to Success initiative exemplifies the type of reasonable, measured rent-reform approach that would benefit the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher rental assistance program and its participants moving forward.

Federal Fiscal Year 2019 Appropriations – March 14, 2018

SDHC sent a letter to U.S. Representative Scott Peters, asking Congress to allocate adequate funding in Fiscal Year 2019 for federal Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher rental assistance and HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) funds.

HUD awards HOME funds to the City of San Diego, and SDHC administers them. HOME funds support rental housing production, first-time homebuyer assistance, property rehabilitation and tenant-based rental assistance that households can receive for a maximum of 24 months.

Under President Donald Trump’s proposed Fiscal Year 2019 budget, funding for HUD would be $6.8 billion, or 14.2 percent, less than the annualized funding levels under the federal continuing resolution for Fiscal Year 2018.

Congressional Hispanic Caucus – Housing Forum – September 8, 2017

SDHC President & CEO Richard C. Gentry was one of only seven housing authority executives across the country who were invited to participate in the National Housing Forum convened by the Congressional Hispanic Caucus on September 8, 2017.

This forum, which included U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco and staff for U.S. Representative Juan Vargas of San Diego, discussed affordable housing needs and the status of the Federal budget for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

U.S. Representative Adriano Espaillat of New York, the Chair of the Caucus’s Transportation, Infrastructure and Housing Task Force, invited Mr. Gentry to the forum.

State

AB 1637 – Missing Middle Housing Act

Author: Assemblymember Todd Gloria, 78th District

Signed into law: October 14, 2017

SDHC and the City of San Diego worked together with Assemblymember Gloria on AB 1637.

SDHC President & CEO Gentry testified in support of AB 1637 on May 10, 2017, at the hearing of the California State Assembly Committee on Housing and Community Development.

AB 1637 allows public housing authorities in the City of San Diego and the County of Santa Clara to make loans to developers of mixed-income developments if:

  • 40 percent of the units are affordable to low-income households (up to 80 percent of Area Median Income); and
  • At least 10 percent of the units are affordable to middle-income households (up to 150 percent of Area Median Income)

SB 2 – Building Homes and Jobs Act

Author: State Senator Toni Atkins, 39th District

Signed into law: September 29, 2017

SB 2 creates an ongoing source of funding for the development of affordable housing by establishing a $75 recording fee on real estate transactions, excluding home and commercial sales. The maximum total fee would be $225 per parcel. This would generate about $250 million per year.

SB 3 – Veterans and Affordable Housing Bond Act of 2018

Author: State Senator Jim Beall, 15th District

Signed into law: September 29, 2017

SB 3 places a $4 billion housing bond on the statewide ballot for November 6, 2018.

SDHC President & CEO Gentry joined San Diego City Councilmember Chris Ward and San Diego County Supervisor Ron Roberts to co-author a commentary in Support of SB 2 and SB 3, published by Voice of San Diego on August 21, 2017.

SB 35 – Housing Accountability and Affordability Act

Author: State Senator Scott Wiener, 11th District

Signed into law: September 29, 2017

SB 35 creates a streamlined approval process for housing in cities that are not meeting their state-mandated housing goals.

City of San Diego

“Addressing the Housing Affordability Crisis” 2018 Status Report – February 21, 2018

SDHC presented its report, Addressing the Housing Affordability Crisis: 2018 Status Report, to the City Council’s Smart Growth and Land Use Committee on February 21, 2018.

Action has occurred on all 11 recommendations in the report, including items that have been completed and others that are ongoing.

San Diego Housing Production Objectives – September 21, 2017

SDHC released a report, Addressing the Housing Affordability Crisis: San Diego Housing Production Objectives 2018-2028, on September 21, 2017, that identified proposed actions to meet the City of San Diego’s housing needs.

The City of San Diego can create enough additional housing to meet its need for 150,000 – 220,000 housing units over the next 10 years if the majority of the proposals in this report are implemented.

The five main sources of potential additional housing units over the next 10 years:

  • Rezoning to increase density around transit opportunity areas: 47,000-146,000 units
  • Redeveloping underutilized parcels of land: 56,000-73,000 units
  • Adapting disused industrial zones and City sites: 11,000-20,000 units
  • Infilling vacant lots: 5,000-6,000 units
  • Utilizing detached Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs): 2,700-5,500 units
  • Total: 121,700-250,500 units

SDHC developed this report in collaboration with City Councilmembers Scott Sherman and David Alvarez, Chair and Vice Chair, respectively, of the City Council’s Smart Growth & Land Use Committee.

This new report is the next step in a process that SDHC started nearly two years ago when it published its report, Addressing the Housing Affordability Crisis: An Action Plan for San Diego, which included 11 recommended actions at the local, state and federal level to reduce costs and increase housing production.

Housing Action Day – July 24, 2017

On July 24, 2017, the San Diego City Council held a special meeting known as “Housing Action Day.”

SDHC presented an informational report about the agency’s affordable housing initiatives, including: the actions taken on the recommendations in SDHC’s report Addressing the Housing Affordability Crisis: An Action Plan for San Diego; Assembly Bill 1637, introduced by Assemblymember Todd Gloria; and the proposed San Diego Affordable Housing Transit-Oriented Development Fund.

The City Council approved Municipal Code amendments to the City’s Affordable Housing/In-Fill Housing and Sustainable Buildings Expedite Program and to encourage the construction of companion units, also known as accessory dwelling units, or “Granny flats.”