While there is great progress amongst homeowners rebuilding, the City recognizes that we still have significant work to do to support recovery needs for home renters in our community. Santa Rosa lost 5 percent of its housing stock in the fires, and renters were significantly impacted. Since the fires, the City, working in in partnership with the California State Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD), has been narrowing in on how best to address this issue through an available federal disaster recovery resource known as Community Development Block Grant - Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funds. HCD was allocated $124.15 million in CDBG-DR funds from the Federal government for all California disasters that occurred in 2017. HCD developed an action plan for how to distribute and utilize that funding.
Within HCD’s plan, $38.46 million is specifically allocated to the City of Santa for a new multi-family housing program. This funding is critical for helping to address Santa Rosa's rental housing needs and will be used to provide gap financing and secure affordability in new rental housing developments. The Federal government recently approved HCD’s plan, and the City is working with HCD to determine the details of the program. Improving the rental outlook for our community is not a quick-fix issue, but we are optimistic about the launch of this program to expedite that work where possible.