Fair Housing in California - June 2, 2019

Fair Housing in California - June 2, 2019

A discussion panel examining AB 686 and its effects on housing in California.

housing solutions panel

Housing crisis: Solutions on the horizon? 

California’s New Fair Housing Law: What Does it Mean for Marin?

 New  law requires every California city and county to identify and address disparities in housing and access to opportunities. How much will these new laws and rules affect local control? Will it change our local zoning? What happens if the law isn't followed?

On Sunday, June 2, 2:30 PM a panel of distinguished experts will present information on the implementation of this new law and discuss potential implications for every jurisdiction in California and most importantly Marin's towns and cities.

Speaking will be Megan Kirkeby, Assistant Deputy Director for Fair Housing of the State Department of Housing and Community Development, Jessica Trounstine, Associate Professor at the University of California, Merced, and Alicia Klein, Associate Director of Housing Development at Resources for Community Development (RCD). Cesar Lagleva, United Marin Rising, will moderate the discussion and there will be time for interaction with the audience. 

Simultaneous translation into Spanish will be available. 

The event will be at the San Rafael Community Center, 618 B Street from 2:30 to 5:00 pm. There is no charge for admission but registration is requested in order to plan. Light refreshments will be available.

Fair housing requirementshave been enforced under the federal Fair Housing Act (Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968).  In 2015, the federal government issued updated and stronger regulations for jurisdictions accessing certain federal funds, requiringrecipients to affirmatively further fair housing including an Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH) every five years. Although the Trump administration withdrew the AFH regulations, the California legislature passed AB 686 the 2015 federal AFH regulations into AB 686.

Much of AB 686 became effective on January 1, 2019. The rest will become effective as the next round of Housing Elements are prepared by the cities and counties in California. Never before has each jurisdiction in California, including the Public Housing Authorities, been subject to state requirements for affirmatively furthering fair housing. 

According to the new law,

“Affirmatively furthering fair housing” means taking meaningful actions, in addition to combating discrimination, that overcome patterns of segregation and foster inclusive communities free from barriers that restrict access to opportunity based on protected characteristics. Specifically, affirmatively furthering fair housing means taking meaningful actions that, taken together, address significant disparities in housing needs and in access to opportunity, replacing segregated living patterns with truly integrated and balanced living patterns, transforming racially and ethnically concentrated areas of poverty into areas of opportunity, and fostering and maintaining compliance with civil rights and fair housing laws. The duty to affirmatively further fair housing extends to all of a public agency’s activities and programs relating to housing and community development."

Supported by the Marin Community Foundation, Community Action Marin, the Marin Chapter of the ACLU of Northern California, and Marin Housing Solutions, admission to this event is free.

Register at Eventbrite under Fair Housing in California AB 686 Impacts of Cities & Counties (https://www.eventbrite.com/e/fair-housing-in-california-ab-686-impacts-on-cities-counties-tickets-60673771885)

For further details, please contact Chandra Alexandre, CEO, Community Action Marin - Phone: 415-526-7500


Download PDF flier, click here or on the image

fair housing 686 eng

Download PDF Flier, click here or on the image

housing solutions dave

An Assessment of Fair Housing, or AFH, is a new approach to identifying fair housing challenges in a city and region. This document differs from the formerly required Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice (AI) in that embraces a more comprehensive planning process, focusing on economic, as well as housing, barriers. The AFH is required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) of communities that accept federal housing and community development funding.

2009 -  HUD office of Fair Housing/Equal Opportunity (FEHO) conducted an audit of the County’s performance under CDBG/HOME regulations. The County is responsible for preparing reports for the entire county, including the 11 cities because it is the recipient of HUD funds. Several findings were noted, including the fact that the County had not filed full reports for 14 years, rather than every five years as required. Final Investigative Report  

2010 -  HUD and the County executed a Voluntary Compliance Agreement calling for, among other things, the County to conduct an Analysis of the Impediments to Fair Housing Choice (AI). The VCA signed in 2010 is apparently still in effect.  A new VCA is being negotiated with HUD.

2011 -  The County contracted Fair Housing of Marin (now Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California) to conduct the first Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice (AI) done in Marin for over 14 years. The full report can be found here. and the Spanish translation of the Executive Summary here.

2011- The Board of Supervisors approved and submitted to HUD - The set of commitments made by the County to address the impediments found in the AI.  Implementation Plan

2015 -  The County executed a contract with Liz Darby to conduct a new Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH) and to help lead equity efforts within the County.

2016 - The County approved a work-plan for developing the new AFH, which can be found here. The AFH has been conducted largely behind closed doors. There are no notices or minutes from the meetings. No material available to either groups has been made public.

Present - The County has acknowledged that the work-plan is behind schedule. No public meetings have been held nor has the Board of Supervisors received an update even though these were scheduled to occur in 2017.

It is one of the goals of Marin Housing Solutions to hold the County to the principles and commitments it has made.