Santa Clara County authorized $123 million for 1,000 affordable housing units. The funding approved by the Board of Supervisors Tuesday comes from a $950 million housing bond voters passed in 2016.
The allocation OK’d this week will pay for six new below-market-rate rental projects and three refurbished buildings in six cities: San Jose, Santa Clara, Milpitas, Cupertino, Gilroy and Morgan Hill. That brings the total number of units funded by Measure A to 1,921 to date, a third of its target of 4,800 affordable homes by 2026.
Some $94 million will fund 620 apartment units, some reserved for low-income residents and some for formerly homeless residents who require on-site support services. Another $29 million will rehab 484 apartment units. Every dollar of county money activates $2.78 in state and federal matching grants or private investment, officials say.
Supervisor Joe Simitian called the latest funding allocation “another significant milestone” in addressing the regional housing shortage and affordability crisis.
“Our efforts to create affordable and supportive housing is benefiting families, veterans, teachers, nurses, single parents, senior citizens, the disabled, foster youth, the homeless and individuals with special needs in our community,” he said in a news release issued hours after the vote Tuesday. “It’s not enough, but it’s real and tangible progress.”
Before Measure A, the county only had about 250 supportive housing units. Since 2015, the county, local nonprofits and cities have upped that number to 1,537—though only 151 are occupied so far. Another 586 are under construction and 800 are in the pipeline.
“These new projects are much more than just affordable housing,” Supervisor Ken Yeager said. “We’re helping some of our most vulnerable residents. Projects in midtown San Jose and Santa Clara will have significant numbers of apartments dedicated to those with special needs and to homeless seniors. These will save lives.”
Supervisor Cindy Chavez applauded the county for staying ahead of schedule on Measure A projects. “By sticking to our plan, we are keeping our word with voters,” she said.