Council to adopt affordable housing strategies March 21

San Juan County Council members are set to adopt the Affordable Housing Work Group Strategic Plan at their March 21, 2017 meeting in the Legislative Hearing Room in Friday Harbor. The 15-member work group developed a vision statement; identified housing needs, three strategies, 16 actions, an Implementation timeline, and measures to monitor success. Read more about the group here.  Posted below are the three strategies, the length of time before they are acted on by the County Council and the departments or officials responsible for each item. 


Strategy 1: Educate Public on the Availability and Affordability of Housing in San Juan County 

Action - Time frame  Primary Owners

A. Develop FAQ Documents - 1 month - Health & Community Services (H&CS)

B. Develop buildable land analysis. - 6 months - Dept. of Community Development (DCD)

C. Complete housing needs analysis - 6 months - DCD

D. Develop and Implement a community engagement plan - 3 months - H&CS, DCD

 Strategy 2: Increase the Affordability and Availability of Housing Stock in San Juan County

Action - Time frame - Primary Owners 

A. Identify and recommend a local affordable housing funding measure - 24 months - Housing Bank Commission (HBC) and County Council (CC)

B. Consider incentives for construction of accessory dwelling units for year-round rentals w/third party contracts  - TBD - CC and DCD

C. Review fee structure for building permits; use of stock plans; reduction/waiver for affordable housing projects; prioritize plan review. - 6 months - DCD

D. Regulate vacation rentals - 6 months - DCD

E. Apply for Community Development Block Grants -  As needed  - H&CS

F. Develop a public/private partnership program to buildaffordable housing units and explore using publicly owned land to construct units  - 12 months - Town Administrator and County Manager

G. Explore incentives and financing plans with utility providers  -  12 months - Lisa Byers and Sandy Bishop

H. Provide density bonuses to property owners creating affordable multi-family units -  6 months - Town and  12 - 18 months - DCD 

I. Evaluate ‘farm worker housing’ provisions to expand its use - 12 months  - DCD

J. Explore use of lodging tax funds for seasonal worker housing - 18 months - County Manager 

 Strategy 3: Maintain Existing Housing Stock that is Affordable.

Action - Time frame  - Primary Owners -

A. Develop a capital account to be used to purchase existing units -  24 months - HBC

B. Identify and recommend a local affordable housing funding measure - 24 months  - HBC and CC

C. Expand home repair and weatherization programs  - 24 months - HBC  

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