ABAG E-News, October 2019

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Association of Bay Area Governments

ABAG E-News, October 2019

Both Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) and Plan Bay Area 2050 Processes Begin

Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) is a state-mandated process that requires local governments to take certain actions to plan for housing production at all income levels. ABAG, acting on behalf of the region’s local governments, leads the RHNA allocation process for the Bay Area – developing a methodology to identify the share of housing units by income level for each jurisdiction – but key to understanding this process is that that the total level of Bay Area housing need is developed in Sacramento by the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD).

The methodology for housing allocations will be developed in collaboration with the Housing Methodology Committee (HMC) starting in October. RHNA – while distinct – is done in parallel with Plan Bay Area 2050. For more information about RHNA, visit the website at abag.ca.gov/our-work/housing/rhna-regional-housing-need-allocation.

For RHNA’s Housing Methodology Committee (HMC), the Executive Board approved the members on September 19th.  The kickoff meeting for the Housing Methodology Committee was held on October 18th. More information about the HMC is available at abag.ca.gov/our-work/housing/rhna-regional-housing-need-allocation/housing-methodology-committee.

Key RHNA milestones are available at abag.ca.gov/sites/default/files/2022-2030_rhna_key_milestones_june_2019.pdf.

Plan Bay Area 2050
Building upon its predecessor, the Horizon initiative, Plan Bay Area 2050 will serve as the next-generation long-range plan for the San Francisco Bay Area. Under federal and state planning regulations, Plan Bay Area 2050 must meet or exceed key requirements related to climate change, housing, and fiscal constraint, among others.

The first phase of the Plan Bay Area 2050 effort – which takes place this fall – will integrate the most resilient and equitable strategies from Horizon as  ABAG-MTC works to build the Draft Blueprint. The Blueprint will detail strategies (e.g., public policies and investments) that could be considered by local, regional, and state agencies to address the significant challenges the Bay Area faces, both today and in the future. Plan Bay Area 2050 Vision and Guiding Principles can be found at planbayarea.org/about/plan-bay-area-2050-vision.  More information about Plan Bay Area 2050 is available on the website at planbayarea.org.

Plan Bay Area Pop-Ups around the Region

ABAG and MTC are holding over 35 Plan Bay Area 2050 Pop-Ups around the region that are scheduled through mid-November. MTC and ABAG staff will be on hand, asking the public for thoughts on strategies to make the Bay Area more affordable, better connected, and even more economically vibrant, healthy and diverse over the next generation.

Below is a complete list of the remaining Plan Bay Area 2050 Pop-Up events, please share with your community members. Please note: Due to PG&E public safety power outages and/or unsafe air quality conditions, some of the pop-ups have been canceled and/or rescheduled.

  • Friday, November 1, San Jose
    11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    San Pedro Square between Santa Clara and St John Streets
  • Saturday, November 2, Oakland
    10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
    Dia de los Muertos Festival, International Blvd., between 40th Ave. to Fruitvale Ave.
  • Saturday, November 2, San Francisco
    10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    Sound of Hope, Chinatown YMCA, 855 Sacramento St.
  • Sunday, November 3, Fremont
    9 a.m. to 11 a.m.
    Irvington Farmer's Market, Bay St. at Trimboli Way
  • Wednesday, November 6, Oakland
    5:30 to 8 p.m.
    West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project, West Oakland Senior Center, 1724 Adeline St.
  • Thursday, November 7, San Rafael
    11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    Pickleweed Library, 50 Canal St.
  • Saturday, November 9, East Palo Alto
    11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
    Acterra, Community Church, 2201 University Ave.
  • Saturday, November 9, San Francisco
    10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
    Health and Harvest Fair, 1800 Oakdale Ave.
  • Tuesday, November 12, Petaluma
    11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
    Petaluma East Farmer's Market, 320 N. McDowell Boulevard, Petaluma
  • Saturday, November 16, San Francisco
    12 p.m. to 3 p.m.
    Lighthouse for the Blind, 1155 Market St., 10th floor

The entire list of Pop-Ups can also be found here: planbayarea.org/events.

Regional Growth Forecast Methodology

Part of Plan Bay Area, the Regional Growth Forecast Methodology was approved at the September 19th ABAG Executive Board. The approval followed a public comment period from July 19 to August 19 and a public hearing. The Regional Growth Forecast Methodology will be used to generate the Regional Forecast, which will be considered for adoption by the ABAG Executive Board in Spring 2020. A Regional Growth Forecast has been used in each Plan Bay Area (the region’s Regional Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Process) to estimate total levels of employment, population and households across the nine-county region over the Plan’s lifespan for each income level.

CA Legislative Cycle Wraps Up as Governor Signs ABAG-MTC Supported Housing Bills

The 2019 California legislative cycle wrapped up over the past weekend as Governor Newsom signed and vetoed bills to meet his October 13 deadline. ABAG that emphasized protection of tenants, production of more housing, and preservation of existing affordable housing throughout the region. ABAG ultimately supported the following seven bills which have all now been signed into law:

Protection Bills
AB 1482 (Chiu), which enacts a ten-year statewide rent cap on annual increases of 5 percent, plus an allowable cost of living adjustment based on the regional Consumer Price Index (with a maximum increase of 10 percent), to protect tenants from extreme rent increases. The bill also establishes a “just cause” eviction policy for ten years, prohibiting landlords from evicting tenants without “just cause” to do so, requiring that the cause be stated in writing, and requiring relocation assistance in “no fault” cases.

Production Bills

  • AB 68 (Ting), which makes it easier for homeowners to create Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs), also known as “casitas” or “granny units” by easing restrictions and speeding up the permitting process. A related bill, SB 13 (Wieckowski), on which MTC took a “seek amendment” position was also signed into law. That bill prohibits local agencies from requiring replacement off-street parking or from imposing an owner occupancy requirement for an ADU permit. It also prohibits impact fees for an ADU less than 750 square feet and caps fees at 25% for an ADU of 750 square feet or larger.
  • AB 1483 (Grayson), which requires cities, counties and special districts to post on their web sites a current schedule of fees and affordability requirements applicable to housing projects as well as an archive of nexus studies conducted since January 1, 2018. The bill also requires the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) in its next and every subsequent update of the California Statewide Housing Plan to include a 10-year housing data strategy that identifies data useful to enforce housing laws and inform policymaking and to establish a workgroup, inclusive of local governments and metropolitan planning organizations, to inform that effort.
  • AB 1485 (Wicks), which expands streamlining opportunities for affordable housing projects in the San Francisco Bay Area that dedicate at 20 percent of the total units to housing affordable to moderate-income households (defined as households with an income below 120 percent area median income).
  • AB 1486 (Ting), which revises ambiguities in the Surplus Land Act in order to provide affordable housing developers a clear “right of first refusal” opportunity when public agencies are disposing of surplus land.
  • SB 6 (Beall), which provides more transparency about the land available for housing development by requiring HCD to create a database of land suitable for residential development as provided by local agencies in their housing elements and of “excess” state land.

Preservation and Funding Bills
AB 1487 (Chiu), which authorizes ABAG and MTC (acting as a newly authorized “Bay Area Housing Finance Authority”) to place various funding measures on the ballot (including a general obligation bond, an employee “head tax,” a parcel tax and a gross receipts tax) within the nine-county Bay Area for affordable housing production and preservation and tenant protection.

ABAG Presidential and Vice Presidential Elections

Nominations for ABAG President and Vice President ended on October 11 at 12:00 p.m. At the close on nominations, there was only one candidate for President and two candidates for Vice President. Ballots for the Vice Presidential election have been mailed to all member electeds and are due back to the Executive Director by noon on November 4th, 2019. Ballots will be counted and the results reported to the Executive Board at the next regular meeting. As there is only one candidate for President, Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguín, he becomes the next President. If you have any questions about the election, please contact Fred Castro, Clerk of the Board, fcastro@bayareametro.gov or your city or county clerk.

Affordable Housing Boosted by BayREN Energy-Savings Program

Bay Area multifamily housing affordability issues have been eased for some through BayREN's multi-family energy rebate program – known as BAMBE.

BAMBE, one of the energy savings program administered by ABAG through BayREN, has lowered energy costs at apartment complexes, making them more affordable for tenants.

Heating, cooling, domestic hot-water equipment, lighting fixtures and appliances are among the areas where energy savings can be found during free inspections of multi-family units. The program also provides a $750 per unit rebate to help pay for upgrades.

Since 2013, the BayREN BAMBE program has helped upgrade over 31,000 units at 458 properties, providing over $22.5 million in rebates and technical assistance to over 80,000 units across the Bay Area.

San Francisco Estuary Conference

The 14th Biennial State of the San Francisco Estuary Conference was held October 21–22 at the Scottish Rite Center in Oakland. The Estuary Conference showcased the latest information about the region’s work to sustain and improve the estuary’s habitats, living resources, water quality, climate resilience and environmental stewardship. In addition to two days of sessions, the State of the Estuary Report 2019, Toward Social-Ecological Resilience was released. For the first time, the State of the Estuary Report takes a closer look at resilience indicators for communities and ecosystems. To review or download, visit the 2019 State of the Estuary Report webpage.

Every two years, the Estuary Partnership brings a focus to the management and ecological health of the San Francisco Bay-Delta Estuary. Over 800 people from all over the Bay, Delta, and beyond have attended each conference. New for this year, the Exploratorium created an interactive arts showcase for the conference entitled: Field Station: Art & Artifacts from the Fisher Bay Observatory Gallery.


  • Wednesday, October 30
    POWER Board of Directors
    11:00 a.m.
    Bay Area Metro Center - Yerba Buena

  • Friday, November 1
    San Francisco Bay Trail Board of Directors
    12:00 p.m.

  • Wednesday, November 6
    RPC Housing Subcommittee
    10:00 a.m.
    Bay Area Metro Center - Mt. Tamalpais - CR 7102

  • Thursday, November 7
    Bay Area Metro Center - Golden Gate CR 8102

    FAN Executive Committee
    10:00 a.m.

    ACFA Credit Committee
    10:05 a.m.

  • Friday, November 8, 2019
    Bay Area Metro Center - Board Room - 1st Floor

    Joint MTC Planning Committee with the ABAG Administrative Committee
    9:35 a.m.

    Joint MTC Legislation Committee and ABAG Legislation Committee
    9:40 a.m.

  • Tuesday, November 12, 2019
    RAWG Workshop on Transportation Element - Plan Bay Area
    9:30 a.m.
    Bay Area Metro Center - Yerba Buena

  • Thursday, November 14, 2019
    Housing Methodology Committee
    10 a.m.
    Alameda County Transportation Commission, 1111 Broadway, #800, Oakland

  • Thursday, November 21
    Bay Area Metro Center - Board Room - 1st Floor

    Finance Committee
    5:05 p.m.

    ACFA Governing Board
    5:10 p.m.

    Executive Board
    7:00 p.m.