Interest area: Housing

Factsheet: Housing Overlay Zones

Housing Overlay Zones (HOZs) provide a package of incentives to developers who include in their projects homes that people can afford. Based on carrots rather than sticks, HOZs encourage production of affordable homes rather than requiring it. They are called “overlay” zones because
they layer on top of established base zoning regulations, leaving in place opportunities for property owners to develop within these existing rules. Rather than imposing restrictions, HOZs present developers with more choices by offering additional benefits to projects that increase the supply of
homes that people can afford. HOZ incentives may include increased density, relaxed height limits, reduced parking requirements, fast-tracked permitting, and exemptions from mixed-use requirements. HOZs may also permit residential construction in zones otherwise restricted to commercial uses. In order to qualify for these incentives, developments must include a certain percentage of homes for lower income households, generally between 25% and 100% of the units. Ultimately, the more valuable the developer incentives included in a Housing Overlay Zone, the more effective the HOZ will be in encouraging production of homes that people can afford. Desirable incentives both motivate developers to take advantage of the HOZ, and reduce development costs to allow construction of more affordable homes. Because zoning decisions have financial value to developers but do not require direct city expenditure, HOZs can create value, which can be used to build more affordable homes without relying on either public or privatedollars.

State of Housing in the East Bay 2010 Symposium: How Can We Meet Affordable Housing & Climate Change Goals During the Economic

05/13/2010 - 3:00pm
05/13/2010 - 6:00pm
East Bay Housing Organizations (EBHO), UC Berkeley's Center for Community Innovation, and the East Bay Community Foundation cordially invite you to the upcoming Affordable Housing Week event:

State of Housing in the East Bay 2010 Symposium:
How Can We Meet Affordable Housing & Climate Change Goals During the Economic Crisis?

Thursday, May 13th, 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm, with reception following program
The David Brower Center, 2150 Allston Way, Berkeley
(Two blocks from the Downtown Berkeley BART. Click HERE for directions.)
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March and Rally to Hold Wells Fargo Accountable

04/27/2010 - 12:00pm
Please Join CRC and our members CCISCO, Tenants Together, Just Cause/ Causa Justa and our allies ACCE, the AFL-CIO, SEIU, Jobs with Justice and Bay Area PICO affiliates in a March and Rally to Hold Wells Fargo Accountable!

**SAVE THE DATE- Tuesday, April 27th, 2010 - 2 Weeks from Today**

Gather at Justin Herman Plaza in San Francisco (by the Embarcadero BART Station)

12 Noon: March through the SF Financial District in downtown to the Wells Fargo Annual Shareholders Meeting

1 pm: Rally at 465 California Street (Merchants Exchange Building, across from Wells Fargo)
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EBHO HAPPY HOUR! Affordable Housing Week Preview!

04/15/2010 - 5:30pm
04/15/2010 - 7:30pm
Join EBHO staff, members, allies and advocates for our next HAPPY HOUR! Come learn more about Affordable Housing Week (May 7-16, 2010) and how you can get involved in all of the exciting activities throughout the East Bay. 

Thursday, April 15, 2010 | 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM at
Pacific Coast Brewing Company,
906 Washington St.  Oakland, CA 94607 one block from EBHO's Offices.
** NOTE: PCB is Family-friendly!

See you there!

SEC Quarterly Meeting - The Foreclosure Crisis: Opportunities for a New Economy

03/12/2010 - 9:30am
03/12/2010 - 12:00pm

The Foreclosure Crisis: Opportunities for a New Economy

For our next Social Equity Caucus quarterly meeting, we will be broadening our understanding of the foreclosure crisis to illuminate strategies by which community groups and the public sector can work together to move from reaction to action, seizing the moment to make concrete gains in economic equity for the most burdened communities in the Bay Area.

Housing Campaign

Richmond residents have been hit hard by the foreclosure crisis. With nearly 2000 foreclosed homes owned by banks and more likely to come, heighborhoods are being torn apart.

This crisis illustrates the need for accountability from financial institutions the need for more effective policies at all levels of government that will stabilize communities by keeping families in their homes, revitalizing neighborhoods, and promoting affordable housing for Richmond residents.

Improved Code Enforcement

REDI Town Hall Leads to Improved Code Enforcement,

Community Stabilization, and Reduced Blight


As the Housing Crisis began to emerge, California ACORN, working with Senator Don Perata, passed Senate Bill 1137 which empowered cities to collect fines on unmaintained, foreclosed properties that cause blight. This new law allows cities to fine negligent property owners up to $1000 per day.

Richmond has been hit hard by a massive wave of foreclosures- 2000 and growing. Many of these homes, now owned by banks, are left untended and in disrepair, endangering the safety of remaining residents.

Support Richmond's Community Land Trust

After years of work, the time is right and the political will is in place to support permanent affordable housing in Richmond through the creation of a Community Land Trust.  On September 15th, Richmond Mayor, Gayle McLaughlin, and co-sponsor Councilmember Jeff Ritterman will introduce a resolution in support of REDI’s proposed Community Land Trust. 

Please attend the 9/15/09 Richmond city council meeting to support this resolution!

For more details, visit:

Richmond City Council Passes First Reading of Tenant Just Cause Eviction Ordinance

Tenants Hit With Unjust Evictions Move Closer to Critical Protections

With a population of 100,000, homeowners in Richmond are not the only victim's of the foreclosure crisis. Overlooked and abandoned in this crisis are renters. Upstanding renters who pay their bills on time and who, by no fault of their own, face eviction, ruined credit and no where to go. One-half of Richmond’s residents are renters and in a city with 2,000 current foreclosures and a 30% increase predicted over the next year, a quiet crisis is unfolding.
Town Hall