Affordable Housing Month is Happening All Month!

Affordable Housing Month 2022 is in full swing! We hope that everyone has had a chance to attend some of the excellent events that have already happened this month. The SV@Home Team certainly has been learning a lot from our partners and community members. A big thank you to everyone who has been putting on events!

Even though we are almost halfway through May, there are still a ton of exciting events that you can RSVP for and attend in the coming weeks. Check out the SV@Home Affordable Housing Month 2022 Calendar to find events you are interested in and register today:

Was there an event you wanted to attend, but could not? No worries, SV@Home will be posting recordings of many of the events on our website here:

Keep an eye out for our weekly email updates on all of the exciting events taking place during the rest of May!

 

How planning for new homes in the Housing Element can help address declining school enrollment

Most school districts across Santa Clara County have been losing students for years, even before the pandemic, leading to budget woes and the closure of neighborhood schools. This declining enrollment is affecting not only our traditional public elementary schools, but private and charter schools too. Even more widespread enrollment declines of over 15% are expected throughout Santa Clara and San Mateo counties in the next decade, causing financial, staffing, and facility challenges that will negatively impact students in many districts. Why is this happening, and what can communities do to help?

Join SV@Home and Palo Alto Forward to learn how planning for more housing can protect schools from the threat of declining enrollment.

 

SV@Home is Hiring!

Join our team!

SV@Home is seeking a passionate, detail‐oriented, and social justice‐focused candidate to support our affordable housing development and finance policy work as our new Housing Production Senior Associate.

Check out our position description and apply today or share it with someone you believe would be right for this role!

 

SV@Home Action Fund Launches

Voter Education Resources Online

This week, our sister organization, the SV@Home Action Fund, published a series of candidate questionnaires and released videos of candidate forums co-hosted with two dozen other housing and community organizations. With early voting starting this week for the June 7th Primary Election, these materials are designed to educate voters about where candidates stand on the biggest challenge facing our region: housing.

The Action Fund’s Candidate Forums featured candidates running for State Senate District 10, San José Mayor, San José City Council District 3 and 5, and Santa Clara County Supervisor District 1. The Questionnaires include responses from candidates for each of those races as well as Assembly Districts 24 & 28, as well as San José City Council District 1.

 

CHPC 2022 Needs Assessment Shows Gap in Affordable Housing Widening

On Tuesday, SV@Home issued a news release highlighting the California Housing Partnerships 2022 Housing Needs Assessment report featuring specific findings for Santa Clara County. The finding shows that challenges for low-income families are growing more severe even as investment in more affordable housing continues to grow. To read the release on SV@Home’s website, click here.

CHPC’s Key Findings for Santa Clara County included:

  • Renters in Santa Clara County need to earn $54.77 per hour – 3.2 times the City of Mountain View minimum wage – to afford the average monthly asking rent of $2,848
  • Asking rents in Santa Clara County increased by 6.3% between Q4 2020 and Q4 2021

Our Executive Director Regina Celestin Williams commented on this report, stating “We know the need is tremendous – too few homes people can afford, too many of us paying way more than we can afford for rent. We also see our collective commitment paying off. We are creating more permanent affordable homes, and we know there are more on the way.”

 

Cities Proclaim May “Affordable Housing Month”

Many of the municipalities in Santa Clara County have officially recognized, or are planning to recognize, May 2022 as Affordable Housing Month. Last week, SV@Home’s David Meyer accepted one such proclamation from Sunnyvale City Council. On behalf of SV@Home, we would like to express our gratitude to each municipality participating in these proclamations because it demonstrates their commitment to the mission of providing safe and affordable housing to everyone in Silicon Valley.

SV@Home’s David Meyer accepts a proclamation from the Mayor of Sunnyvale declaring May as Affordable Housing Month

Milpitas and Sunnyvale gave proclamations on May 3rd. Palo Alto provided a declaration last Monday and Mountain View made theirs this past Tuesday.  Upcoming proclamations are scheduled for Campbell on May 17th and for Santa Clara County and San José on May 24th. To see a replay of Sunnyvale’s proclamation, click here

 

#MembershipMatters – Become a Member Today!

Become a member today to help us develop and equip the next generation of affordable housing leaders.

 

Welcome to SV@Home’s Policy Rundown, your need-to-know overview of important housing policy actions and developments from the past two weeks

 

Grand opening of Edwina Benner Plaza in Sunnyvale, by MidPen/ David Baker Architects

SV@Home’s Housing Element Toolkit keeps you in the know!

Cities in Santa Clara County are beginning to release the Public Drafts of their Housing Elements, the eight-year plan that will lay the foundations and create the conditions for housing to be built in your city or not. This is a critical time for advocates to weigh in on your city’s housing plan for the next eight years!

 

In our Housing Element Toolkit, you can check out the city-specific calendar of Housing Element study sessions, community engagement events, and helpful resources to support your advocacy.

 

Amplify Your Voice in the Process: Effective Messaging for Housing Elements

 

Do you want to let your elected leaders and city officials know your ideas and opinions on how to address the affordable housing crisis through the Housing Element process? Have you ever felt too intimidated or felt as though the challenge was too big to make a difference? Shift the Bay is changing all of that. Last week, they hosted a webinar on how to organize your thoughts and offered suggestions on how to participate in the process as many Silicon Valley municipal governments begin updating housing elements. To learn more and to view a compelling presentation that will inspire you, click here: Housing Elements Effective Messaging Guide – Shift The Bay

 

Mountain View Council Approves Over 300 New Homes at 555 W Middlefield Road!

On Tuesday, after a seven-year process of modifications and alterations, the Mountain View City Council voted 4-2 to approve a major redevelopment at Avalon’s 555 W Middlefield Road. Avalon’s proposal will add 323 homes to the existing apartment complex, including 48 new deed-restricted affordable homes. Importantly, the construction of these additional homes will not displace any current residents since they will be constructed over existing surface parking lots and other space at the complex. The project will also create a number of new amenities for the existing residents, including new park space. Following significant Council and community feedback, Avalon is providing a number of mitigations to help ensure that they are protected from the environmental impacts of new construction.

 

SV@Home has been a longtime supporter of this proposal, which received our official endorsement. We are glad to see the City of Mountain View undertaking this type of urban infill that is creating hundreds of new homes near the downtown and transit resources. This is an excellent example of the infill development Mountain View is seeking to prioritize: it densifies existing residential neighborhoods without displacing existing residents and adds new benefits to the community. Thank you to the Mountain View City Council for your support for this critical development! And thank you to all of the community partners that have been longtime supporters, including Mountain View YIMBY, the Mountain View Coalition for Sustainable Planning, Balanced Mountain View, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, and the Housing Action Coalition.

 

San José Receives Homekey Funding for Downtown Hotel Conversion

Also on Tuesday, the State of California announced its latest Project Homekey awards, including $25.2m for the City of San José! This funding will allow San José to purchase the 90-unit Arena Hotel downtown and convert it into interim and eventually permanent supportive housing for our neighbors who are experiencing homelessness.

 

SV@Home is a strong supporter of the Project Homekey initiative and the efforts of jurisdictions across Santa Clara County to identify opportunities to use these funds to provide much-needed housing for our most vulnerable neighbors. We are looking forward to the City of San José’s efforts to create this new housing resource and will continue to support Santa Clara County jurisdictions with their Homekey proposals.

 

North San José Strategy: Opportunity to Make Good on Prior Affordable Housing Commitments

Next Tuesday, the San José City Council will receive a plan to overhaul the North San José Area Development Policy. North San José has been unique in its potential for growth and in its commitment to affordable housing. The City’s General Plan envisions a quarter of all new homes in San José to be sited there, with 20% required to be affordable. Unfortunately, implementation has so far been a major disappointment. Rather than expanding equity and opportunity in a jobs and transit rich part of the city, North San José has been allowed to fall short of its affordable requirements, and has become an exclusive high-rent district. Since 2018, staff has been directed to prioritize policies to make good on the original 20% commitment, and greatly expand both affordable and market rate development. 

 

While the proposed changes to the current plan go some way towards opening up production, they do not include an explicit commitment to the 20% affordable requirement or the policy tools necessary to make this feasible. That makes Tuesday a critical moment to turn the discussion, and demand bold and intentional steps be taken to make good on the promise. There have been too many delays and too many missed opportunities to let this one pass. 

 

We expect strong leadership from the City Council, which has consistently reaffirmed the commitment to 20% affordable, and to an inclusive and equitable community. But, we have been here before, and will need to see real leadership to drive details and timelines. SV@Home is circulating a letter calling for the council to make good on prior commitments and enable the development of a community that is affordable to its residents and integrated racially and socio-economically. If you or your organization are able to join the effort, you can review the letter here, and contact mathew@siliconvalleyathome.org to add your name.

 

HCD Presents: 2022 Multifamily Finance Super NOFA Webinar

 

May 17th at 9:00AM

The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) is pleased to announce the release of the Multifamily Finance Final Guidelines and Notice of Funding Availability (Super NOFA) which offers an opportunity to apply for up to four HCD funding sources simultaneously and includes approximately $650 million in total available funding.

 

Please register for one of our in-person and virtual technical assistance workshops to obtain more detailed information on eligible programs and how to apply for funding.

 

City of Sunnyvale Draft Housing Element Hearing at Planning Commission

May 23rd at 7:00PM

The City of Sunnyvale Planning Commission will hold a hearing on the Draft Housing Element released on Friday, May 6th, 2022 for a 30-day public comment period. To view the Draft Housing Element, please visit the City of Sunnyvale’s Housing Element Update website: https://sunnyvale.ca.gov/property/housing/housingelement.htm

 

City of Sunnyvale Draft Housing Element Hearing at Housing and Human Services Commission

 

May 25th at 7:00PM

The City of Sunnyvale Housing and Human Services Commission will hold a hearing on the Draft Housing Element released on Friday, May 6th, 2022 for a 30-day public comment period. To view the Draft Housing Element, please visit the City of Sunnyvale’s Housing Element Update website: https://sunnyvale.ca.gov/property/housing/housingelement.htm.

Affordable Housing Month May 2022

Even though we are almost halfway through May, there are still a ton of exciting events that you can RSVP for and attend in the coming weeks. Check out the SV@Home Affordable Housing Month 2022 Calendar to find events you are interested in and register today:

 

Deep Dive on Affordable Housing: A How-To Guide for Advocates

 

May 17th at 12:00PM

Take a deeper dive on affordable housing so that you can understand the opportunities and how to push them to completion. What does affordable housing mean, and how does the process happen? These are two of the many questions this new this new series of events will address to empower advocates on how to engage and drive their needs.

 

For Affordable Housing Month we will start with an overview of what “affordable housing” means – the many shapes and forms, and the different values and impact of each. We will then open the door on the how the process really works, and how the role of funding shapes what gets built.

 

Happy Housers Happy Hour

 

May 26th at 5:30PM

Come celebrate with SV@Home as we close out Affordable Housing Month! Enjoy sips and bites at the first in-person event and meet the SV@Home team, including our new Executive Director, Regina Celestin Williams, Affordable Housing Month sponsors and partners, too! We will also have special guest,  Paul Gonzales, the local San Jose artist, behind the Affordable Housing Month 2022 artwork joining us for the night. This is an event you don’t want to miss!

Enoteca La Storia–  320 W. St. John St., San Jose, CA 95110

 

May Policy in Action @ Home

Local Elections & Legislative Update with SV@Home Action Fund

 

May 27th at 12:00PM

Learn about the SV@Home Action Fund’s work to further a pro-housing agenda through local elections and in state legislation

 

The SV@Home Action Fund (Action Fund) works locally and in Sacramento to further our housing policy goals. In this Policy In Action event, we’ll give you an update on both of those fronts, and answer your questions.

 

This is SV@Home’s first monthly Policy In Action event, but it’s really a rebranding of our long-running “HAC” series. We hope you like the new name as much as we do!

Greenbelt Alliance & SPUR Present: Sunnyvale’s Steps to Sustainability

 

May 15th at 10AM

Join Greenbelt Alliance and SPUR to explore how Moffett Park can be designed as an Eco-Innovation District.

 

To ensure communities are resilient to a changing climate and inclusive for all to thrive, we must employ innovative development ideas that leverage nature-based solutions. Sunnyvale’s Moffett Park area is poised for this exact type of development, also known as an eco-innovation district. How? Attend this outing to find out!

 

Santa Clara County Office of Supportive Housing Presents: Co-Op Pilot Program for ELI/ VLI

 

May 16th at 1:00PM

This workshop event will introduce Santa Clara County’s new ELI/VLI co-op pilot and allow opportunities to engage and provide feedback. The main focus of this workshop is to provide information and answer questions about the County’s new Type 5 project type in the County’s NOFA, which is for cooperative housing projects. The event is intended for established affordable housing developers and small non-profits/CDCs in Santa Clara County who may have an interest in learning more about cooperative housing (and ultimately applying to our NOFA).

 

TransForm and the Mineta Transportation Institute Present The Future of Mobility: Innovations to Replace Parking Mandates

 

May 16th at 3:00PM

Webinar about transportation solutions for challenges faced by cities and developers facing growing demand.

 

Espanol: Se proporcionará interpretación al español en la conversación.

 

In 2022, the City of San Jose will vote to reform policies that mandate parking in new development. It will also implement Transportation Demand Management measures, perhaps supported by these mobility solutions above, to assist with this transition.

 

SPUR Presents: Office to Housing Conversion: San Francisco

 

May 17th at 12:30PM

Since the beginning of the pandemic, broad swaths of San Francisco’s Financial District and South of Market neighborhoods have been all but abandoned by companies who have transitioned to either a hybrid or fully-remote model of working. This exodus of major employers means that many of the city’s tallest buildings sit underused, or even empty, while Bay Area residents continue to endure an oppressive housing crisis and many of our neighbors remain unhoused. The widespread office vacancies, brought on by the unprecedented events of the last two years, present a unique opportunity for developers and city leaders — not just in San Francisco, but across the United States. Join us for an in-depth discussion about the chance to, and feasibility of, converting unused office space into desperately-needed homes.

 

Coming Back Together: A SPUR Member Networking

 

May 19th at 5:30PM

Two years of pandemic-forced isolation, coupled with a widespread work-from-home environment, has disconnected formerly-reliable professional ties and fractured our highly developed social skills. Even SPUR’s own programs, which once served as unique opportunities to interact with like-minded urbanists from around the Bay Area, now primarily occupy a virtual realm rarely lauded for its capacity to foster meaningful engagement. But as COVID cases continue to wane and individuals warm to the notion of gathering again with strangers, meeting new people and reconnecting with old associates will become de rigueur ways to ease back into a new form of normalcy. Whether you’re ready to dip your toe back into intentional networking, or want to just share a conversation and a drink on us, we invite you to join SPUR for an informal happy hour this spring, exclusively for members.

 

United Way Bay Area Centennial Celebration

 

May 19th at 6:00PM

In 2022 United Way Bay Area (UWBA) celebrates 100 years of fighting poverty across the San Francisco Bay Area. 100 years of uniting community members, building and operating programs, and providing resources to Bay Area residents. We celebrate YOU: Those we have the honor to serve, our partners, donors, volunteers, and friends. You inspire and empower us to continue, year after year, as we charge ahead into our second century of impact, more determined than ever to dismantle the root causes of poverty and build equitable pathways to prosperity.

 

Founded on December 22, 1922, United Way Bay Area (UWBA) has worked to address the root causes of poverty in the San Francisco Bay Area region.

 

 

LISC Presents: Gambling with homes, or investing in communities? How speculation drives evictions and poor housing quality, and how affordable housing protects neighborhoods of color

 

May 26th at 9:00AM

After the U.S. Supreme Court held that the nationwide pandemic eviction moratorium was illegal, evictions increased by 20%, driven mainly by jurisdictions without local protections. Rents have risen as much as 40% in some cities, and predatory investors are operating in settings ranging from manufactured housing to multifamily apartments to single family rentals. To combat the evictions crisis unfolding nationwide and prevent a massive transfer of homes and wealth to speculative ownership, it is critical to identify the market forces and actors that drive displacement. In this LISC Institute webinar tied to new research from LISC and UNHP on this topic, panelists will discuss how speculation fuels evictions and poor housing quality in low-income and BIPOC neighborhoods, and share organizing and policy strategies to curb speculation and displacement, and expand community and tenant ownership as part of a movement toward social housing.

 

350 W. Julian St. #5 • San José, CA 95110  •  408.780.8411  •  siliconvalleyathome.org