In a report to the Carlsbad City Council, Housing Program Manager Bobbi Nunn said that the city is working to expand the supply of affordable housing by leveraging private and public funds, and is meeting goals and objectives established in its Public Housing Agency Annual Plan.
The City of Carlsbad Housing & Neighborhood Services Division administers the federally funded Section 8 Rental Assistance Program, and is required to submit a five-year plan to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The city is in the fifth year of the plan, and Nunn told the council on Tuesday, April 9 that the city is meeting all federal requirements that apply to the rental assistance program. The city submits annual reports to HUD to show progress under the plan.
In 2018, the housing agency received contributions totaling $7.2 million. Of that amount, $6.6 million went toward rental assistance payments, while $580,000 went toward program operating expenses. The funding was approximately $99,000 higher than the previous fiscal year’s amount.
The city has met the annual goals set for its affordable housing plan for 2018, including:
Expanding the supply of affordable housing units for low-income families. Six new units came on line for purchase at the Sea Grove Townhomes, and 101 new rental units came on line at Portola Senior Apartments.
Improving the quality of assisted housing and voucher management. The Carlsbad housing agency has been designated by HUD as a High Performing Housing Agency for 10 consecutive years.
Increasing housing choices. City housing staff has contacted local owners and hosted a booth at the San Diego County Apartment Association EXPO to raise awareness of the benefits of participating in the rental assistance program.
Promoting self-sufficiency and asset development of families and individuals. The city has collaborated with non-profit organizations and support services and maintains a Community Resource Directory to provide information on services available to low-income families. It also contracts with the Carlsbad Service Center, which provides job training, employment preparedness and a hiring center.
The city’s housing agency ensures equal opportunity and fair housing, and contracts with the Legal Aid Society of San Diego to provide fair housing education and counseling. It also provides landlord and tenant mediation services and helps victims of domestic violence by advising them of available resources as required by the Violence Against Women Act.
The goal of affordable housing assistance is to serve the needs of families who are low-income (under 80% of the area median income), very low-income (under 50% of the area median income), and extremely low-income (under 30% of the area median income).