Join SV@Home for a conversation about new Fair Housing requirements, and how the Housing Element can help overcome patterns of segregation.
Every eight years, cities throughout the state are required to update their Housing Elements to plan how they will meet their local share of new housing development (known as RHNA, or the Regional Housing Needs Allocation). In the Bay Area, it is our turn to begin this new Housing Element cycle, which covers the years 2023 to 2031.
Housing elements must identify adequate sites to show that sufficient homes can be built to meet the allocated housing need as well as to outline policies and actions that the jurisdiction will employ to prioritize and incentivize housing development and prevent displacement, among other requirements.
New to this planning cycle, local jurisdictions must demonstrate that they are using their Housing Element to combat discrimination, overcome existing patterns of segregation, and foster inclusive communities free from barriers that restrict access to opportunity based on protected characteristics such as race and ethnicity. HCD has recently released comprehensive guidance on how cities must incorporate the law, known as Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH), into their Housing Element.
Using fair housing metrics to allocate the Bay Area’s total housing need will help advance the AFFH mandate and create housing opportunities in resource-rich communities, many of which have a legacy of exclusion that must be overcome. Promoting greater housing opportunities in these neighborhoods helps advance regional priorities such as economic mobility, public health, and improved educational outcomes. This metric should be used to choose sites for all income levels, not just the low-income share of housing need, to ensure that more housing of all types is built where it is needed most. In this way, allocation based on access to high opportunity areas can also advance the requirement to increase housing supply & mix of housing types across all jurisdictions in an equitable way.
Come learn about this very important piece of the Housing Element puzzle, and ways to get engaged to make sure your local jurisdiction has a plan that will work!
Kelsey Banes, Regional Director for Peninsula & South Bay at YIMBY Action
Thomas Silverstein, Associate Director of the Fair Housing & Community Development Project at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
The HAC is a monthly, informal brownbag discussion convening Housers to engage on hot housing topics. Every month, we select a topic or current event, bring in an expert to give a brief presentation, and then open up the discussion to ask questions, float new ideas, and identify potential areas for shared action.
This event is open to SV@Home members and the general public. Interested in supporting ongoing SV@Home programming, advocacy, and policy work? Become a member and/or renew your membership today here.