The Santa Barbara County Association of Governments voted earlier this week to distribute the final portion of countywide housing units to the region’s eight cities and unincorporated areas in an effort to meet future housing needs.
The board voted 12-1 to distribute the final 24,856 housing units to local cities and the county for their future housing production planning efforts over an eight-year period between 2023 and 2031. Carpinteria City Councilman Al Clark was the lone vote in opposition.
The distribution method prioritizes reducing countywide jobs-housing imbalance and advances five statewide objectives, including: promoting infill development; furthering fair housing; and seeking parity across the region related to housing offered to various income-level housing needs, among others.
The board’s action allocates 60% of the final countryside number to the South Coast, where 60% of the region’s jobs exist, officials said.
Local jurisdictions have a 45-day appeal period for their own allocation or another jurisdiction’s allocation. The close of the appeals period is set for May 3, at which point SBCAG will notify all local agencies of any appeals received. If none are received, SBCAG will issue the final housing allocations.
The final plan will be considered by the board in August.
“While the Regional Housing Needs Allocation process is technical, it can also be acrimonious and misunderstood. At the end of the day, our responsibility as cities and counties is to do everything we can to help housing production for people who live and work in our communities,” Das Williams, SBCAG vice chair and 1st District supervisor, said in a statement. “This is vital for our region’s prosperity, to meet climate change goals and reduce impacts of traffic congestion resulting from the imbalance between affordable housing opportunities and where jobs exist.”
Of the nearly 25,000 units planned, approximately 8,001 will be allocated to the city of Santa Barabra. Other totals include: Santa Maria, 5,418 units; unincorporated South Coast, 4,142 units; Lompoc, 2,248 units; Goleta, 1,837 units; and Carpinteria, 901 units.
Additional units have also been allocated for the unincorporated area of the Lompoc Valley, unincorporated area of the Santa Maria, Guadalupe, Solvang, Buellton and the Santa Ynez Valley.
— Mitchell White