SV@Home was at the March 12th Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors meeting when it unanimously approved nearly $9 million in funding for the Office of Supportive Housing to finance the development of affordable homes for people with intellectual or developmental disabilities (I/DD). These funds will be specifically targeted to support individuals who have extremely low and very low incomes so they can live independently in the community.
The Board’s action follows its commitment in September to identify $40 million for this purpose. Advocates came out in force to thank the Board for this first tranche of funding and to encourage them to continue to work towards securing additional funds to reach the $40 million goal. Housing opportunities for people with developmental disabilities are few and far between– this commitment from the County is a very important step in tackling this gap.
Over the years, developers and service providers have found that the best way to create these housing opportunities is by integrating units for people with disabilities in new affordable housing where they can receive the supportive services that allow them to live independently. The Housing Choices Coalition has identified several current developments throughout the County that could provide nearly 600 new homes, including 118 for individuals with I/DD. As an example of a recent success, earlier this year the Palo Alto City Council approved the Wilton Court development, which specifically sets aside 21 homes for I/DD residents.
We look forward to continuing our collaboration with the Board of Supervisors, the Office of Supportive Housing, and housing advocates for people with developmental disabilities to support further funding opportunities and new housing opportunities for people of all incomes and abilities.