County of Marin - News Releases - Housing Workshop

For Immediate Release
December 11, 2015

Board to Hold Evening Workshop on Housing

Marin’s affordability is topic of special 5 p.m. session December 15

San Rafael, CA – As part of a continuing discussion about housing affordability, the Marin County Board of Supervisors will hold a third workshop to review rent stabilization and tenant protections options. 

Community Development Agency Director Brian Crawford speaks to a crowd during a 2014 meeting about affordable housing.Community Development Agency Director Brian Crawford speaks to a crowd during a 2014 meeting about affordable housing.

The Board will convene a special 5 p.m. public workshop December 15 to continue public sessions that have taken place the past few months during the Board’s normal morning and early afternoon meetings. The late-afternoon time gives residents a chance to participate after regular office hours.

Planners from the Community Development Agency (CDA) have previously reviewed policy options at two Board previous Board workshops and Supervisors provided the policy direction to pursue the following options:

  • purchase existing housing to preserve economic diversity
  • work with landlords to keep units affordable
  • provide incentives for affordable second units
  • renew an amnesty program for second units

Marin is one of the most expensive places to live in the United States. The median single-family detached home in Marin costs more than $1 million, a condominium or townhome averages more than $500,000 and rents average $2,500. On average, rental prices in Marin have soared in recent years, impacting thousands of renter households that comprise 30 percent of Marin’s population. Local housing unaffordability is hampering employee recruitment for local businesses, school districts and nonprofits.

Based on the limited opportunities for new development of affordable multifamily housing, the County has been considering a broader range of policy measures aimed at preserving the affordability of existing housing and different ways of creating new opportunities for affordable housing. The County has worked with local landlords to keep affordable units and promote the development of second units.

For the December 15 workshop, CDA staff recommends consideration of rent stabilization, just cause for evictions, relocation assistance, and source of income protection. Tenant protections serve the same overall affordability goals as the policy options considered by the Board to date while having a targeted benefit to renters who may be forced out of their home if rent increases are significant and frequent enough to outpace their budget.

Comments on the topic may be submitted via email to Alisa Stevenson, Planner for the Community Development Agency, at astevenson@marincounty.org.

The December 15 session will take place in the Board of Supervisors chamber (Suite 330) at the Marin County Civic Center, 3501 Civic Center Drive, San Rafael. 

All public meetings and events sponsored or conducted by the County of Marin are held at accessible sites. If you are a person with a disability and require information or materials in alternative formats – or if you require accommodation to participate in a county program, service or activity – please contact department staff at (415) 473-7331 or (415) 473-4381 (voice/TTY) or e-mail disabilityaccess@marincounty.org.

Contact:

Leelee Thomas
Planning Manager
Community Development Agency

3501 Civic Center Drive
Suite 308
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-6697
Email: Leelee Thomas
Affordable Housing webpage