6th Cycle Housing Element Update
Draft Housing Element was sent to the State on July 31, 2023
The Draft HE went to the Planning Commission on June 22nd and to the City Council on July 5th. The Council adopted Resolution No. 2023-72 moving the draft forward, with recommended changes, to the CA Housing & Community Development (HCD) Dept. City staff expect to submit the revised draft to HCD in early August. Additional review of HCD's comments and recommendations will go back to the Council in Nov/Dec.
About the Housing Element
The Housing Element is one of the State-mandated components of the City’s General Plan. It provides a framework for the City to accommodate future housing needs, including planning for housing that is suitable for all income levels. The Housing Element has a few main purposes:
- To provide an assessment of current and future housing needs for the next eight years.
- To provide an assessment of constraints to housing and housing production
- To establish housing goals, policies, and programs that direct housing needs, reduce barriers to development, and ensure compliance with State legislation.
The Housing Element is an eight-year plan and the 6th cycle update of the City of Marina Housing Element is underway and must be certified by the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) by a pre-determined deadline, December 31, 2023.
The Housing Element includes a strategy for the City to meet its share of the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA). HCD determines the total number of new housing units that each region must accommodate during the eight-year planning period. The Association of Monterey Bay Areas Governments (AMBAG) is responsible for initiating discussions with the public and representatives from local jurisdictions to finalize and adopt the methodology to allocate the region’s housing needs among member jurisdictions. Through land use and zoning regulations, Marina must plan for its share of the RHNA, including housing that is affordable to households at all income levels. The City’s RHNA allocation is shown in the table below.
City of Marina 6th Cycle RHNA Allocation
1 Very Low Income: Less than 50% of Area Median Income
2 Low Income: 50-80% of Area Median Income
3 Moderate Income: 80-120% of Area Median Income
4 Above Moderate Income: 120% or more of Area Median Income
The Housing Element update will assess how current demands are being met and will plan for projected housing needs over the next eight years. The Housing Element also addresses housing for special needs populations, such as persons with disabilities, very low-income residents, and persons experiencing homelessness. The City’s housing strategy must also reduce any identified barriers to equality and opportunity.
In addition, the Housing Element update must include the following:
- Community Needs Assessment: A complete analysis of the specific housing needs and an inventory of the resources and constraints relevant to addressing housing needs
- Sites Inventory: An inventory of land suitable for residential development that could accommodate the City’s RHNA allocation
- Constraints Analysis: an evaluation of governmental and nongovernmental barriers to housing production in the City of Marina
- Goals, Policies, and Programs: Identification of specific policies and actions to implement the Housing Element
- Other analyses, policies, and goals required to meet community housing needs, and/or comply with applicable State law
Public Outreach and Workshops – Ongoing
Stakeholder Interviews - Ongoing
Housing Element Sites Inventory – Fall 2022 – Winter 2023
Housing Element Program Development – Fall 2022 – Winter 2023
Prepare Draft Documents (Housing Element) – Winter 2023 – Spring 2023
Public Draft Element Reviews – Spring 2023
Environmental Review – Fall - Winter 2023
Public Hearings – Summer - Fall 2023
Stay informed throughout the Housing Element process. Sign up to receive surveys and updates via email, and check back for meeting announcements, workshop materials, and public documents for review.
For additional comments or questions, email Guido Persicone, Community Development Director, at email@example.com.
Community Workshop #2 (Virtual)-March 15, 2023 630-8PM
Workshop Flyer (English)
Workshop Flyer (Spanish)
Workshop Flyer (Korean)
Community Meeting Recording
Community Meeting Presentation
Planning Commission Meeting - 6:30pm on Thursday, June 22, 2023. This meeting will be hybrid.
The City of Marina is committed to helping Affirm Fair Housing per Assembly Bill 686 (AB 686). For residents in needs of housing assistance, please contact these partner agencies:
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- When and why does the Housing Element need to be updated?
State law requires regular updates to the Housing Element to ensure relevancy and accuracy. These updates are currently required every eight years. The time from one update to the next is called a housing cycle. Marina is currently in the 5th housing cycle that began in 2015 and will end in 2023. The upcoming 6th Housing Element cycle will cover the next eight-year planning period (2023-2031).
Having an approved housing plan helps make Marina eligible for grants to help fund infrastructure to support housing development and more.
- What is the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA)?
The RHNA decides the number of residential units the city must plan for in the Housing Element. The RHNA identifies the number of residential units required for each economic income segment, which includes very-low, low, moderate, and above-moderate incomes. The calculation of income levels is based on Area Median Income (AMI), which for Marina is $73,115 per year for a household of four.
- Must cities and counties build the housing required by RHNA?
While cities and counties do not generally build housing – that is the function of private developers – they do adopt plans, regulations and programs that provide opportunities for how and where housing development occurs. Although the Housing Element identifies sites that are available in the city to plan for future housing, it does not mean the property owner is required to build the housing within the next eight years or any time in the future. Rather, the City is required to identify sites that are suitable for development and may implement programs to support housing development.
- What makes a house affordable to an income group?
In a word, density. The foundation of State’s Housing Element Law is based on the premise that density is a proxy for affordability. The idea being, the more housing units on a site (density) translates to lower construction costs per unit, which translates to lower rental/sale prices of those units (affordability). Based on this, California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) assigns minimum density figures to each income category. In Marina, HCD identified a zoning density of least 20 dwelling units per acre to be appropriate for the development of housing that can accommodate low-income households.
- How will housing locations be selected?
The updated housing plan must show the exact locations where future housing can be built and identify the potential number of homes that can be built at those locations. The City’s Housing Element will include an inventory of the sites that are compliant with current legislation and shows where housing units can be accommodated. The sites must be vacant or underutilized and have potential for development during the eight-year planning period. Some of the sites identified may be already zoned for housing that can accommodate a certain percentage of the RHNA income categories.
The City may establish criteria and eliminate sites based on the following:
- Topography is not conducive to building
- Sites are not safe because they are in a flood zone or high-fire area
Criteria to support housing on sites may include:
- Vacant lots
- Underutilized sites, such as lots with uses or structures that are no longer needed or need rehabilitation
- Locations where housing could be become denser than it is today
- Locations near public transit and essential services like neighborhood serving retail centers
- Sites where infrastructure, such as water and sewer service, can support more housing
Per the HCD Site Inventory Guidebook, sites best suited to accommodate the RHNA for lower income households should include factors such as:
- Proximity to transit
- Access to high performing schools and jobs
- Access to amenities, such as parks and services
- Access to health care facilities and grocery stores
- Locational criteria that meet Low-income Housing Tax Credit Program funding
- Proximity to available infrastructure and utilities
- Sites that do not require environmental mitigation