Affordable Housing Month Rewind:

{Editor’s Note: Affordable Housing Month 2022 ended just two months ago, but many of the events were recorded and still hold valuable, actionable information for housers. SV@Home asked our summer interns to watch some of these recordings and extract five essential points from each. We felt it was a great way to pass our housing knowledge to the next generation and serve as a quick reference guide for our members who want to go back and re-live some of the most critical moments of an action-packed month of housing events. What follows is a blog post from Maren Bick-Maurischat and her observations from our kick-off event. Enjoy!}

What: SV@Home focused on exploring the success of Measure A during an event that kicked off Affordable Housing Month 2022 with co-hots Catalyze SV, Destination Home, Santa Clara County Office of Supportive Housing, SCC Housing Authority, First Community Housing, and Office of Supervisor Otto Lee. 

Watch: A complete recording of the virtual event can be accessed here: How Your County is Spending Your Money on Affordable Housing. 

Recap: 

  • Approved by Santa Clara County voters in 2016, bond Measure A provided a $950 million investment in affordable housing for Santa Clara County, with $700 million earmarked specifically for extremely low-income and supportive housing development. 
  • Panelists for the event included Alex Shoor and Rosio Malina with Catalyze SV, Ray Branson with Destination Home, Natalie Monk with the Office of Supportive Housing, Mike Schaefer with Community First Housing, and Karl Lauff with Santa Clara County Housing Authority. 
  • The presenters discussed how Measure A works and has seen significant success in creating more affordable housing since its passage in 2016. 
  • Ray Branson from Destination Home shared some statistics that helped to illustrate the tremendous progress made over the last six years in Santa Clara County, thanks to the funding from Measure A. 
    • In the last eight years, Measure A funds housed nearly 20,000 people in Santa Clara County.
    • Before 2015, Santa Clara County had less than 300 Supportive Housing Units. In 2022, that figure is now 3,600. 
    • Of the 4,800 units set as a goal when Measure A was passed in 2016, 3,641units have been approved. 
  • The impact of Measure A funding and the County approach to addressing homelessness were discussed further in another affordable housing event hosted by Destination Home, the recording is also available to stream here: Understanding Homelessness – Introduction to Homelessness and Supportive Housing in Santa Clara County
    • The event helped to further break down the causes of homelessness and explained the housing first approach to addressing the issue. It serves to further illustrate how necessary funds like those from measure A are to ending homelessness.

Get involved/take action: If you are interested in learning more about the ways Santa Clara County has been investing in affordable housing and specifically using the funds from Measure A to achieve its goals, you can access the full 2016 Measure A Affordable Housing Bond Progress Reports here. 

You can also access the website for the County’s Office of Supportive Housing if you would like more information about their work. 

Finally, if you are interested in becoming more involved with housing policy, you can join the volunteer Policy Advocacy Committee