Here is why the ABAG and HCD affordable housing requirements are bad math.
Our new Novato housing element for 2007-2014 wants us to identify sites to build 1,241 affordable housing units of which 446 are very low and low affordable housing. This is after Novato built almost all the very low and low affordable housing in all of Marin in the last cycle, 1999-2006.
The Association of Bay Area Governments report “A Place to Call Home: Housing in the San Francisco Bay Area 2007” provides a breakdown of affordable housing Regional Housing Needs Allocations and permits issued by cities in the county of Marin from 1999 to 2006.
RHNA allocated 1,241 very low income housing for Marin County. A total of 528 permits were issued and 297 were from Novato or 56 percent. Five of the 11 cities in Marin (Belvedere, Corte Madera, Fairfax, Ross and San Anselmo) had no permits issued.
RHNA allocated 618 Low Housing for Marin County. A total of 751 permits were issued and 527 were from Novato or 85 percent. Six of the 11 cities in Marin (Belvedere, Corte Madera, Fairfax, Ross, San Anselmo and Sausalito) had no permits issued.
Novato was allocated 242 Low Housing units and 527 permits were issued or 218 percent more than allocated by RHNA. Now HCD is saying we have to prove it will be built before 2014 in their response to our housing element. The California Government Code Section 65584 clearly does not say this and takes into consideration that it may not be built.
The code states: (2) While it is the intent of the Legislature that cities, counties, and cities and counties should undertake all necessary actions to encourage, promote, and facilitate the development of housing to accommodate the entire regional housing need, it is recognized, however, that future housing production may not equal the regional housing need established for planning purposes.
The census data (www.bayareacensus.ca.gov) indicates Novato population from 2000-2010 grew from 47,630 to 51,904 which is an 8.97 percent growth and an increase of 4,274. The average household was 2.52 persons. The household growth was 1,755. In the 1999-2006 housing cycle Novato built 2,966 affordable housing units. Thus Novato built 1,211 more affordable housing units than the TOTAL household increase in this time period.
More importantly, to complete a comparison for 2000–2010 for affordable housing and households affordable housing in 1999 would have to be removed and the affordable housing built in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 would have to be added and I do not have this information.
Given one year would be removed and four years added it is expected the 1,211 difference would be the minimum difference. (See attached worksheet.) Adding the Minimum Housing Floor factor of 40 percent to Novato’s affordable housing calculation in the next cycle does not seem reasonable. The affordable housing far exceeded the needs of Novato and was subsequently filled with residents outside of Novato. It is not fair to the citizens for Novato to have to support tax free affordable housing for non-Novato residents that stresses the schools and public services.
Now they want us to build another 1,241? Novato is being gamed and the numbers make no sense. From 1999 to 2014 they are asking us to build 4,207 affordable housing units with total household growth from 2000 to 2010 was a total of 1,755 households?
This makes no sense for Novato and will drive down the value of Novato homes.