In 2017, Governor Brown signed a 15-bill housing package aimed at addressing the state’s housing shortage and high housing costs. Specifically, it included the Building Homes and Jobs Act (SB 2, 2017), which established a $75 recording fee on real estate documents to increase the supply of affordable homes in California.
The State Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) created several new grant programs to disburse the funding collected, including the Permanent Local Housing Allocation (PLHA) program for allocation to Local Governments. Ninety percent (90%) of PLHA will be distributed to Entitlement Jurisdictions, based on the 2017 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Formula Allocation and 10% will be disbursed through a competitive process for non-Entitlement Jurisdictions. Buena Park is eligible to apply for the Formula Allocation as an entitlement jurisdiction.
On April 27, 2020, HCD released the Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) for PLHA funds. Buena Park’s estimate 5-year funding amount is $2,215,452.
Eligible activities under Section 301(a)(6) of the PLHA Guidelines: Assisting persons who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness, including, but not limited to, providing rapid rehousing, rental assistance, supportive/case management services that allow people to obtain and retain housing, operating and capital costs for navigation centers and emergency shelters, and the new construction, rehabilitation, and preservation of permanent and transitional housing. This will be accomplished by supporting navigation centers and providing funds to a local service provider to outreach to homeless and offer programs and assistance to help them find a road to permanent housing once the individual is ready.
The North Service Planning Area (SPA) urban cities through the County of Orange, including Brea, Cypress, La Palma, Los Alamitos, Stanton, and Villa Park are collaborating with North SPA entitlement jurisdictions of La Habra, Fullerton, Buena Park, Orange, Placentia, and Yorba Linda to provide homelessness services at the Buena Park and the Placentia Navigation Centers. La Habra will act as Treasurer, collecting funds from all North Spa cities and disbursing those funds to Buena Park and Placentia for the construction, operation and maintenance of the navigation centers.
In order for all North SPA to provide funding to this collaboration, Buena Park must enter into a Permanent Local Housing Allocation Agreement with the County of Orange for the urban cities as well as separate PLHA Agreements with the cities of La Habra, Fullerton, Orange, Placentia and Yorba Linda. The agreements must be executed and submitted to HCD prior to the distribution of PLHA funds from the State. Staff is currently working on those agreements and will bring the agreement with La Habra to Council for approval at the July 14, 2020 City Council Meeting. Applications are due to HCD on or before July 27, 2020. The term of the PLHA with the County and entitlement cities must be for the full-five-years that coincide with the agreement with HCD for PLHA entitlement allocations.
As a requirement of the PLHA guidelines, applicants must submit an application in response to the NOFA and provide a Five Year PLHA Plan, utilizing revenue to be collected from years 2019 through 2023. The Plan shall detail the manner in which allocated funds will be used for eligible Activities; A description of the way the Local government will prioritize investments that target households with income at or below 60 percent of Area Median Income (AMI); A description of how the Plan is consistent with the programs set forth in the Local government’s Housing Element; and evidence that the Plan was authorized and adopted by resolution by the governing body and that the public had an adequate opportunity to review and comment on its content.
City of Buena Park Plan for PLHA funding over the next five year period: