A state law is starting to ripple through regional housing plans: more density in the most affluent areas. | Local News


After months of labor by its workers to come up with a state-mandated regional housing needs allocation (RHNA) methodology that might move muster with the state’s Division of Housing and Group Growth, the board of the Related Monterey Bay Space Governments adopted a technique on Jan. 12. It’s one the board believes can stand up to scrutiny from state housing officers.

RHNA cycles, as they’re known as, come up each eight years. Within the course of, regional businesses like AMBAG map out housing allocations for each jurisdiction. These numbers of latest housing models per metropolis signify a mandate for every jurisdiction to zone properties to satisfy these housing objectives.

And for cities on the Monterey Peninsula, zoning for the proposed allotted models will signify a frightening problem. Within the draft methodology adopted by AMBAG, town of Monterey, for instance, should zone for 3,654 models in subsequent eight-year cycle, Pacific Grove may have 1,125 and Carmel may have 349 whereas Seaside, probably the most populous metropolis on the county’s coast, will solely should zone for 616 models. (Two of the no votes on the AMBAG board got here from Monterey councilmember Ed Smith and Carmel councilmember Karen Ferlito.)

The huge cut up is due largely to Meeting Invoice 686, handed in 2018 to advertise equity and handle systemic racism and segregation in housing points. That gave delivery to a brand new acronym, AFFH – Affirmatively Furthering Honest Housing – that state officers prioritized in order that native jurisdictions might meet the aims of AB 686, which basically seeks to push extra housing into prosperous areas.

AMBAG workers met with state Housing and Group Growth workers on Jan. 4 to go over the plans they’d mentioned with the AMBAG board, and have been basically informed that none of them can be accepted by HCD as a result of they didn’t put sufficient emphasis on truthful housing. The choice the board finally accepted, in a 19-5 vote, is one which AMBAG workers do imagine will likely be accepted by HCD.

A handful of board members expressed frustration over the aggressive housing numbers, however one level of competition was that this was basically an unfunded mandate, and that whereas one arm of state authorities received’t let the Peninsula put in new water meters, one other arm is demanding it zone for brand spanking new housing with the specter of monetary penalties.

“This might doubtlessly flip right into a punitive end result, and the entire cities on the Peninsula are going to have an unimaginable time assembly any of those numbers,” Smith stated. He known as his no vote a “protest vote.” Ferlito stated that whereas Carmel generates hospitality jobs due to tourism, these jobs might be threatened if town zones for the housing the state needs.

“Sure, we most likely might enhance from single-story to two-story or three-story,” Ferlito stated, “however in doing that, would we be really damaging the village [of Carmel] to the purpose the place we’d not have the ability to generate these jobs?”

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